31 Jul 2007

PNG rape reported in post-election violence

6:17 pm on 31 July 2007

Police in Papua New Guinea say disgruntled supporters of some losing election candidates have vented their anger by burning houses and in one case raping a young mother.

The mother of two was raped by four men in the North Wahgi region of Western Highlands Province.

PNG newspapers say the men were allegedly supporters of losing candidate Fabian Pok and went on a rampage after the declaration of Benjamin Mul as the winner of the local seat.

Mr Pok urged his supporters to remain calm and said he would challenge the election result in the courts.

Meanwhile, in the Hoskins area of West New Britain Province, police reported a return to calm after election-related fighting.

This year's elections have been much less violent than in 2002 when an estimated 100 people died in election-related violence.