Jayapura – The fate of pilot Philip Mark Mehrtens, who has been held hostage by an armed criminal group or KKB led by Egianus Kogoya since February 7, is not yet known for certain.
Although the condition of the Susi Air pilot, a New Zealand national, is currently unknown, previously there was a photo circulating showing Philip with Egianus Kogoya and his members.
Various efforts to free Philip continue to this day by prioritizing negotiations involving all elements including society, family and figures.
“Various efforts have been and will continue to be made to free the pilot by prioritizing negotiations,” said Pangdam XVII/Cenderawasih Major General TNI Izak Pangemanan
Currently, it has been 244 days since the pilot who worked for the Susi Air airline was held captive by the KKB, to be precise since February 7 2023. Philip was held hostage after the armed group burned the plane he was piloting shortly after landing at Paro Airport.
Even though he has been in captivity for 244 days – from the photos circulating – there is no significant change in Philip’s physical appearance.
“From various photos circulating, it appears that there are no significant changes, in fact Philip’s body condition is stable and his face doesn’t look stressed,” said TNI Major General Izak Pangemanan.
From the photos circulating, it appears that the hostage is not skinny, looks healthy, is always neatly dressed, and only his eyes convey a different look.
Nevertheless, various steps continue to be taken by the TNI-Polri, including the regional government.
“The negotiation process continues and it is certain that there will be no military operations in an effort to free the hostages,” said TNI Major General Izak.