BOUGAINVILLE TRUCE IS WORKING

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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (November 2, 1997 - PACNEWS)--- The Papua New Guinea government says the Bougainville truce is working and progressing well.

Minister for Bougainville Affairs Sam Akoitai says the government is pleased with the way the Burnham Truce Declaration and the removal of internal travel and other restrictions on the troubled island are working.

Akoitai made the statement while welcoming members of the Truce Assessment Team to Bougainville at the end of last week. The delegation, comprising Australian, New Zealand and PNG experts, are on the island to assess technical requirements for agreed Bougainville peace monitoring arrangements.

The visit is part of the agreement reached between the PNG government and various Bougainville factions at the recent Burnham Army Camp peace talks in New Zealand.

Akoitai says there is a need to move quickly to provide a sense of security the people of Bougainville need, by getting the Truce Monitoring Group into place as soon as possible.

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