4 Jun 2002

Another death in pre election violence in Papua New Guinea

1:50 pm on 4 June 2002

There was further pre election violence in Papua New Guinea at the weekend with a man killed while another had a hand chopped off.

The National newspaper says supporters of rival candidates clashed in separate incidents in the Eastern Highlands and Southern Highlands just two weeks before the start of polling.

In the Eastern Highlands town of Asaro, five supporters of a candidate bashed a supporter of another candidate in the head and stomach until he collapsed.

Police say the man was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital.

Later that night one of those involved in the murder began setting fire to houses including those belonging to the dead man's relatives.

But police say the owner of one of the houses caught the arsonist and chopped off his hand.

While the three local candidates have denied the involvement of their supporters, police say they have identified the candidate involved.

Meanwhile on Friday in the Southern Highlands rival supporters of two candidates clashed with rocks, bottles and sticks in the town of Pangia.

Several people were injured and two vehicles seriously damaged.