Papua New Guinea: Bougainville: the forgotten human rights tragedy

Human rights violations, including extrajudicial executions, “disappearances”, ill-treatment and arbitrary arrests and detention continue at an alarming rate in the context of the civil war on Bougainville. Since November 1993 Amnesty International has documented at least 62 cases of extrajudicial execution and at least 13 “disappearances” by the PNG Defence Force (PNGDF) or the government-backed paramilitary Resistance Force. The armed separatist Bougainville Revolutionary Army (BRA) have also been responsible for deliberate and arbitrary killing and hostage-taking. These abuses are taking place in a climate of impunity, where only one alleged killing by the PNGDF has been investigated since the conflict began. These violations are unseen by the media and human rights monitors who are prevented from travelling to the island, and largely ignored by the international community in recent years. Amnesty International fears that this cycle of violence will continue unless the PNG Government immediately addresses the situation.

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