2 Oct 2007

PNG opposition leader warns of soldiers' disillusionment over Moti affair

4:11 pm on 2 October 2007

Papua New Guinea's opposition leader has cautioned that elements of the Defence Force may be disillusioned by the handling of the Julian Moti case.

Referring to reports that soldiers plan to arrest Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare over his alleged role in the Moti Affair, Sir Mekere Morauta says he wasn't aware of any credible evidence to suggest such a plan.

But Sir Mekere says soldiers could feel wronged for executing a government order which later got them into trouble.

He says people are becoming restive about the lack of action by the police and prosecuting agencies in laying charges against the individuals implicated for breaking laws in the Defence Board of Inquiry into the Moti affair.

Julian Moti, who is the attorney general in Solomon Islands, was secretly flown out of PNG on a military aircraft in 2006, avoiding extradition to Australia.

A PNG defence force report into the escape found Sir Michael and others had been involved and that charges should be laid.

Sir Michael Somare, has arrived home amid heavy police security.