7 Oct 2004

UN rules out Bougainville election this year

5:30 pm on 7 October 2004

The UN secretary general, Kofi Annan, says it is unlikely that elections will go ahead on the Papua New Guinea island of Bougainville this year despite progress in peace negotiations.

He says the leaders of both PNG and the province of Bougainville remain committed to the peace process.

In July, the UN Observer Mission in Bougainville was extended to the end of the year.

Mr Annan says the UN will continue to facilitate the discussions as it is the only mechanism available to link the parties to progress preparations for an election.