Berantas (Indonesia)

Country: Indonesia
Details of Formation: According to several reports of statements of a military commander, the group formed in a bottom-up approach by locals wanting to protect their communities from GAM. After its formation was announced, it was endorsed by the military in accordance with the government’s efforts to defeat GAM rebels in November 2003. However, another source states that the PGM was set up by military and police authorities.
Details of Termination: After the devastating tsunami at the end of 2004, the Free Aceh Movement temporarily stopped fighting. In the months afterwards the Indonesian government and rebels of the Free Aceh Movement started a new round of negotiations. With the signing of a peace deal on August 15, 2005, Aceh received far reaching autonomy and the decade long fighting came to an end. No more evidence that the Berantas/People‘s Anti-Separatist Movement is still active after this date.
Purpose: The group was formed by communities to defend themselves and to fight against GAM rebels (Free Aceh Movement) and was also used by the government for this purpose. Another source states that it was created by military and police to generate horizontal conflict in Aceh. It participated in mass rallies in favour of extending martial law.
Organisation: The group was linked to and supported the military (TNI), although the latter officially denied these links. The military refused to refer to the group as a militia. The head of the militia was Satria Insan Kamil.
Weapons and Training: Weapons of the group included sharpened bamboo sticks and machetes.
Size: --
Reason for Membership: Members were reportedly motivated by the wish to defend their own communities.
Treatment of Civilians: --
Other Information: In Aceh Jaya regency, the anti-GAM movement is called the Anti-Free Aceh Movement Front (FAGSAM), while in South Aceh, thousands of civilians have established the Anti-Separatist Movement (GPSG). In Lhokseumawe, North Aceh, a similar group is called the People's Fortress to Fight Aceh Separatists (Berantas). AKA People's Anti-Separatist Front, People's Fortress to Fight Aceh Separatists, People‘s Anti-Separatist Movement
References: Information was taken from news sources listed in the PGMD.