3 Apr 2008

Reconciliation team now in Oria in south Bougainville after one killed in bus ambush

8:26 pm on 3 April 2008

The Autonomous Bougainville Government in Papua New Guinea says a reconciliation team has now arrived in Oria village in the south of the main island, following killings by two warring factions in the past two weeks.

In the latest incident, on Tuesday, a bus load of Oria residents was shot at by Me'ekamui militants, killing one and injuring three.

Denis Kuiai, the first secretary to President Joseph Kabui, says it may have been a revenge attack after the killing of 3 Me'ekamui members last month.

He says the reconciliation team was subsequently allowed into Oria, and is there without security.

"They think if they go with armed security personnels it would mean a completely different thing altogether. But it is a combination of ex-combatants, church representatives, government representatives, and also youth representatives. It has been fairly represented. We also have members of the Me'ekamui faction from Panguna."