Gun amnesty extended in PNG's Hela province

2:44 pm on 2 March 2017

The police and military in Papua New Guinea's Hela province have extended a gun amnesty until Friday, promising to show no mercy to anyone caught with illegal firearms after then.

Hela Province Tribesmen

Hela Province Tribesmen Photo: RNZI / Johnny Blades

The amnesty was introduced last month when more than 300 police and military personnel were sent to the Highlands province after months of tribal fighting and a build-up of high-powered firearms.

That was supposed to end on Tuesday, but PNG defence force commander, Lieutenant Colonel John Manuai, said that had been postponed because Hela leaders were in Port Moresby.

Speaking to the Post Courier, he urged anyone still hiding weapons to surrender them before Friday.

The police last week estimated that about 30 to 40 percent of all known weapons had been handed in so far.

Lieutenant Colonel Manuai said after Friday, security forces would show no mercy, and arrest anyone found with illegal firearms.

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