6 Sep 2006

Amnesty tells PNG to tackle violence against women

2:13 pm on 6 September 2006

Amnesty International says the Papua New Guinea government cannot hide behind tradition or claim it lacks the resources to tackle the violence against women in the country.

The organisation has just released a report saying violence against women has become endemic in PNG.

The Asia Pacific Director at Amnesty International, Purna Sen, says they found that violence has touched the lives of every woman in PNG, through her family or friends or her own experience.

She says they heard some grim stories.

"We heard really phenomenally astonishing accounts of sexual abuse, of mass rape, of gang rape, or rape within police stations, of whole busloads of women being taken and abused. We heard of the ready recourse to local implements such as knives and other tools like being used in violence against women."

Purna Sen of Amnesty International.

She says the PNG Government must begin meeting its commitments to ensure the safety of women.