25 Oct 2011

Lack of law and order in PNG prompting Australian offer of more police support

3:05 pm on 25 October 2011

An Australian government minister says raising the quality of policing in Papua New Guinea is critical to making improvements in sectors such as health and education.

The Australian governrment is considering a PNG government request for additional policing assistance.

There are presently 14 Australian Federal Police working in PNG and Australia's Parliamentary Secretary for Pacific Island Affairs, Richard Marles, says they are considering sending more.

He says they won't be frontline police but will work in an advisory capacity.

Mr Marles says it's clear that law and order remains a significant issue in PNG.

"You can make all sorts of advances in the areas of health and education which can then be undermined by a lack of law and order and so I think that there is a desire on the part of the PNG Government to address this is something we really welcome and we want to do what we can to help in supporting that and so that is really what is the driving motivation behind this proposal."