1 Feb 2006

Bougainville militants expected to return to school

5:13 pm on 1 February 2006

The Autonomous Bougainville Government says some of the young militants who had set up road blocks around the Papua New Guinea province may return to school.

Efforts are being made to persuade those maintaining the roadblocks to remove them, and the ABG's Vice President, Joseph Watawi, says progress is being made.

Mr Watawi says the blockades around Tonu seem to have dissolved and have been unmanned for some time.

He says they have also had a reconciliation in central Bougainville in an attempt to have the Arawa roadblock removed.

And the Vice President says in Buin in the south there has also been progress with those involved expressing an interest in going back to school.

"I have just spoken with some of the chiefs in Buin who have indicated that there are about 13 of these young men who have been engaged in the roadblock who intend to further their education with some assistance from the New Zealand Government [which is] sponsoring a special programme that could help these young men back into educational institutions."