Separatist fighters release video of NZ pilot Phillip Mehrtens who was captured in Indonesia

Separatist fighters in Indonesia's Papua region have released video footage of a New Zealand pilot taken hostage seven days ago.

Philip Mehrtens was kidnapped after landing his plane in Papua's remote mountainous province of Nduga.

In the video sent to the BBC's Indonesian service, Mehrtens was surrounded by seven West Papua National Liberation Army fighters.

They pledged to release the pilot if Papua was granted independence.

A spokesperson for the group, Sebby Sambom, told RNZ Pacific they had kidnapped him because the New Zealand Government co-operates with the Indonesian military.

The fighters appearing in the videos were armed with a mixture of assault rifles and bows and arrows. 

Mehrtens is seen wearing a blue denim jacket, a matching hat and long khaki pants. 

He read a prepared statement in which he repeated the rebels' demands. 

Sambom said the group continues to demand negotiations from the New Zealand Government for Mr Mehrtens release.

He says they would not harm the New Zealander.