Source Reuters

JAKARTA, Indonesia-Indonesia tightened security in the town of Wamena in the easternmost region of Papua, after 10 people were killed during a riot triggered by rumours that a child had been kidnapped, an official said on Friday.

More than 200 security personnel, including police and the military, had been deployed to contain the situation after over 20 people had also been hurt in Thursday's riot, police said.

The situation was "manageable" but was being monitored, Papua province police spokesperson Ignatius Benny Ady Prabowo said in a statement.

The riot had started after locals, angered by rumours about a child kidnapping, started throwing rocks at Wamena police station where a man accused of abducting a six-year-old was detained, he previously said.

Police summoned the child's parents to clarify that she was safe, but that failed to stem the violence and other buildings were set ablaze in the area, he added.

Security forces responded by opening fire, killing 10 people and wounding 23, said Benny.

Amnesty International in Indonesia called for an investigation, saying the civilian deaths "and also the excessive use of power by the state apparatus there" were regrettable.

Papua's police chief apologised for the deaths.

Tensions have been running high in Papua, which is one of the poorest parts of the country, after separatist rebels abducted a New Zealand pilot.

The Indonesian military has said it was prepared to conduct a "law enforcement operation" as a last resort to free the pilot if negotiations failed to secure his release.

Separatists have waged a low-level fight for independence since the resource-rich region, once governed by the Netherlands, was brought under Indonesian control following a controversial United Nations backed referendum in 1969.