Papuan Volunteer Corps

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The Papuan Volunteer Corps (PVK, Dutch: Papoea Vrijwilligers Korps) was a corps consisting entirely of Papuans, formed on February 21, 1961. It was established to contribute to the defense of Dutch New Guinea against the infiltration of the Indonesian Army. The establishment of the Corps by the Dutch Cabinet was approved in December 1959, and the corps was to serve as a semi-military police.

The PVK was composed of different peoples of Papua, and was under command of colonel of marines W.A. van Heuven. As an emblem the PVK chose the Cassowary (kasuaris in Dutch): the Corp's motto was Persevero (I persist). The PVK was armed and was equipped with a khaki uniform and a hat with the left edge upward, which was adorned with the PVK emblem and a plume.

In 1961–1962, the Indonesian threat greatly expanded. After the administration of the territory was passed to the United Nations (UNTEA) and the subsequent Indonesian government (1962–1963), the PVK was dissolved, and the members were dismissed. Some members later joined the Indonesian Army. Others, including Sergeant Awom Ferry, founded a guerrilla army, the Free Papua Movement (OPM), and began a struggle for independence from Indonesia.

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