16 Jul 2013

Australia and PNG revive police co-operation

1:32 pm on 16 July 2013

Australia will send 50 police officers to Papua New Guinea to battle rising crime, reviving a co-operation deal.

The Australian prime minister, Kevin Rudd, has told his counterpart, Peter O'Neill, that the officers will be deployed in Port Moresby and Lae by the end of the year.

Australian police were thrown out of PNG by the nation's Supreme Court in 2005 when it ruled the immunity from prosecution for Australian bureaucrats was unconstitutional.

Mr O'Neill says the new plan will differ from the 2005 Enhanced Cooperation Programme.

There is about one police officer for every 1,400 residents, with the force dogged by lack of resources and corruption.

Crime is also on the rise, with four Chinese nationals hacked to death just a few kilometres from the capital's central business district two weeks ago.