20 Feb 2006

Police in Papua New Guinea's Western Highlands attacked with knives

4:23 pm on 20 February 2006

Policemen in the Papua New Guinea province of Western Highlands have been attacked with knives by locals.

The National newspaper reports that one policeman is seriously injured and 10 others received bruises and cuts to their faces and other parts of their bodies.

The provincial police commander Wini Henao says locals numbering more than 30 attacked the policemen while they were in their barracks at the weekend.

The policemen were attacked after they tried to stop locals from attacking a man, who had been chased from the rugby field and had run into the police station to take refuge.

Mr Henao condemned the attack and issued an ultimatum to the locals to hand over the suspects involved within three days.

Failing that, he says he will close the station and transfer the 15 policemen and their families out.

The attack comes only after people in the Nebilyer district open fired on a police vehicle.