5 Jan 2004

Papua New Guinea's BRA say weapons voluntarily handed over

3:10 pm on 5 January 2004

Bougainville's untouched area, Panguna, has at last opened up to join the peace process in Papua New Guinea.

But the Bougainville Revolutionary Army says any weapons handover will be done at its own pace.

About 85 high-powered guns, homemade weapons and explosives belonging to hardcore BRA and Me'ekamui soldiers have been handed over and contained from Panguna's No Go Zone.

Soldiers recently handed in their weapons voluntarily without United Nations' supervision and brought them into the UN office in Arawa for verification.

UN officials verified and locked the guns in three trunks before returning them to Panguna for the commanders and people to look after.