29 Nov 2005

PNG transfer of former Fiji soldiers delayed

4:29 pm on 29 November 2005

The transfer of two former Fiji soldiers from the Papuan New Guinea province of Bougainville to the capital, Port Moresby has been delayed while police continue to interview the pair.

The former soldiers are part of a group of eight who have been in the Siwai provincial settlement of Tonu allegedly training locals in military skills.

The group is there at the invitation of a conman and self-styled principal of the so-called Kingdom of Papala, Noah Musingku.

A Fiji diplomat from the High Commission in Port Moresby entered the rebel-held area during the weekend and brought out the two soldiers with him.

They say they have been permitted by Noah Musingku to fly to Port Moresby to "clear the air" about their activities in Tonu.

But local media say their departure has been postponed while PNG police interrogate them.