15 Mar 2007

Vanuatu police lay charges against Vila rioters

10:24 am on 15 March 2007

Police in Vanuatu have laid charges against nine people in relation to the deadly tribal clashes in Port Vila earlier this month.

This includes one Ambrym man who is facing the first murder charge to stem from the fighting which left three men dead.

The fighting reportedly erupted over an allegation that an Ambrym man had used black magic or witchcraft to harm a Tannese man.

As a result of the subsequent violence, two Amrbym men and one Tannese died.

The police spokesman Willie Ben Karlot says the rest of the nine are charged with offences like unlawful asembly and theft.

He says 140 people who were arrested last week in connection with the violence remain in custody at the Vanuatu Mobile Force compound