DROUGHT RELIEF TRUCK LOOTED IN ENGA, PAPUA NEW GUINEA

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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (January 7, 1997 - PACNEWS)---Drought and frost relief operations in Papua New Guinea's Enga Province were halted Monday when a crowd of people looted a truck carrying relief supplies into the devastated province.

The truck was stopped between Wapenamanda and Wabag when a large number of people used force to cut open the containers and remove 25 tons of rice and 25 tons of cooking oil, The National reports.

The truck was under police escort at the time, but the police were hopelessly outnumbered by the crowd.

This is the second time a relief truck has been looted. A container of rice was stolen in similar fashion December 18, while on its way to Wabag.

Looting threats in other parts of the Highlands, including Chimbu and Southern Highlands, are forcing relief organizations to scale back their activities and to move supplies only when under strong police escort.

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