Killings in PNG

Alan Bradley abradley1 at bigpond.com
Tue Jun 26 07:45:09 MDT 2001


>From the ABC:
http://abc.net.au/news/2001/06/item20010626135159_1.htm

There were also some particularly smarmy comments from Australian Foreign
Minister Alexander Downer which I couldn't find quoted.

--------------------------------------------------
 PNG PM appeals for calm after 3 killed in violent clashes

Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister has appealed for calm following a series
of violent clashes between student protesters and police in which three
people were killed.

Sir Mekere Morauta has defended the actions of police who triggered the
violence when they moved to break up a peaceful protest.

Violent clashes in the PNG capital of Port Moresby has left 3 dead and at
least 16 injured. Richard Dinnen reports.

Three people are dead after violent clashes between police and student
protesters in the PNG capital, Port Moresby. Richard Dinnen reports.

Many on the streets believe it was the police who started the violence by
moving into break up what had been a peaceful five-day protest against
privatisation.

Three university students are dead and at least 16 others have been injured.

For now, the situation remains tense but calm.

There is considerable community anger at the so far unexplained police
decision to use force and as people take in what has happened and begin to
mourn the dead, the potential for further trouble remains high.

Opposition leader

Papua New Guinea's Opposition leader, Bill Skate, blames the country's
Government and police for the current violence.

While in Australia receiving medical treatment, Mr Skate is calling for an
end to the protests, but says the Government is to blame for the escalation
on the streets of Port Moresby.

He says the Prime Minister, Sir Mekere Morauta, should be held responsible
for the civil unrest.

"The situation is that the police provoked the people and that's the
situation we have now...if there are three deaths in any democratic country
he should resign," Mr Skate said.

"He should not be holding on to the position to allow more deaths."

Warning

Australia has warned of the danger of more disturbances in Port Moresby.

The travel advice issued by the Foreign Affairs Department in Canberra says
Australians should not move around the Papua New Guinea capital.

Foreign Affairs says the situation in Port Moresby has deteriorated, with
reports of looting and burning of buildings and motor vehicles.

The travel notice says large groups of people are roaming Port Moresby and
there could be more trouble.

The Australian warning says traffic between Port Moresby and the airport has
sometimes been disrupted because of demonstrations.
© 2001 Australian Broadcasting Corporation





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