Alleged PNG Police Assault On Settlers To Be

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Investigated
Officers allegedly ‘crippled’ men by severing their Achilles
tendons

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, May 29, 2013) – A group of men living in a settlement in Papua New Guinea’s National Capital District (NCD) are nursing wounds they received from police officers who allegedly assaulted them on Sunday.

NCD police commander operations Chief Inspector Perou Ndranou, who visited them at the 6-Mile community in Port Moresby assured them that a thorough investigation would be carried out.

The 74 men from the Saraga Settlement at 6-Mile said they were ordered by the officers to lie on the road before they were assaulted.

One of them was admitted to the Port Moresby General Hospital after his ankle was badly injured.

The men from Kabwum, Morobe claimed that police officers were trying to cripple them by severing their Achilles tendons.

The men were involved in a minor ethnic clash with a group residing at 8 Mile after a relative was killed on Saturday. Four homes were then burnt on Sunday but the Gordon police station commander and a mediation coordinator quickly got the two groups together to stop the fight.

They agreed and asked police to sort out the matter.

The men were returning to their settlement at 6-Mile when they were attached by a group of police officers at 7-Mile.

Spokesman Okom Geso said though they were carrying weapons, they were not noticed and they did not harass anyone on their way home.

"Even if we were wrong, the police have no right to treat us like this and chop us like firewood. We are human beings," he said.

Ndranou apologized to the people of the Saraga settlement and said the rogue officers would be dealt with.

"I will pursue this case because what happened was wrong and it is affecting us in the force as well," he said.

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