Papua New Guinea's prime minister has asked the speaker to put on hold the removal and destruction of carvings at the national parliament building.
Peter O'Neill has told the Post Courier that it was unnecessary to remove items of PNG's national heritage.
He also says PNG has freedom of religion and Papua New Guineans' rights to worship should be respected.
The speaker, Theo Zurenuoc, ordered their removal last week.
The Post Courier says an Israel-based Messianic group is behind the move to destroy the carvings.