The governor of Papua New Guinea's Hela Province has launched a joint operation by police and military forces in a bid to address widespread tribal fighting and curb a suspected build up of firearms in Hela.
The Post Courier Newspaper reports the state has committed almost three-and-a-half-million US dollars to the joint operation which will run for two months.
Governor Francis Potape said the launch coincided with the arrival today of members of the PNG Defence Force who join their counterparts from the Police Mobile Squad in the provincial capital Tari.
Mr Potape urged community leaders and landowners to surrender all firearms as he said the joint taskforce would not hesitate to physically retrieve weapons that were not voluntarily handed over to them.
Mr Potape hower said the "call-out" was a temporary solution and that a permanent police and court structure was needed for the province.
He said more police manpower and resources were also needed to maintain law and order in Hela.