Papua New Guinea’s government has approved the callout of additional security forces to the Highlands, where election-related violence lingers. At least twenty people have died since vote counting began last month in Enga province’s capital Wabag. PNG’s election has finished except in one electorate in Southern Highlands, where at least five deaths have been reported over grievances. The Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill, has announced the expansion of the Defence Force’s callout in Hela Province to prevent unrest in neighbouring Enga and Southern Highlands.
In a statement he said patience had ended with troublemakers in both provinces, signalling a new zero-tolerance approach to law enforcement.
Mr O’Neill didn’t elaborate on how many troops would go to Enga and Southern Highlands, but there are already hundreds of combined security forces personnel in both areas.