13 Feb 2013

PNG plans fivefold increase of military

4:05 pm on 13 February 2013

Papua New Guinea is planning a fivefold increase in the size of its military.

The Defence Minister, Dr Fabian Pok, has told Parliament that over the next ten years Defence Force personnel will be increased to 10,000.

He says the Force had been downsized from 4,000 to 1,900 under an Australian funding reform in 2002.

The newspaper, The National, reports the minister as saying the government plans to recruit about 1,000 men and women each year for the next ten years.

He says the government has already approved the purchase of new patrol vessels, aircraft and firearms.