15 Jul 2019

PNG Highlands killings have 'changed everything'

3:46 pm on 15 July 2019

Papua New Guinea's police minister said the massacre of more than two dozen women and children in the Highlands has "changed everything".

Bryan Kramer.

Bryan Kramer. Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Koroi Hawkins

Bryan Kramer visited the scene of last week's killings on the weekend, where he announced that a military unit and police mobile squad will be sent to Hela Province.

He said the murder of at least 29 people, including several children, was a chilling escalation of tribal violence in the region, where attacks tend to be confined to men.

"So [the] killing of innocent women and children in tribal conflicts are unheard of, so last week's merciless killings has changed everything where the immediate concern is that it will become the new trend."

Mr Kramer said in a post on Facebook he's concerned such attacks could become a new trend, and authorities were working hard to catch the offenders.

"High-level discussions on a strategic deployment action plan with the use of drone technology and satellite surveillance, will be used to track and apprehend those on the run."

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs