Papua New Guinea: Australian professor, researchers taken hostage

Authorities have said that a group of people were kidnapped by armed criminals in the country’s Southern Highlands region.

The Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary (RPNGC) said on Monday that it was responding to confirmed reports that a number of hostages, including foreign nationals, had been taken by an armed group.

Their statement followed a report by Reuters news agency that an Australian university professor had been kidnapped in the country’s Southern Highlands region.

Police confirmed that the incident had taken place at the border of Southern Highlands and Hela provinces, near Fogoma’iu village.

“Deputy Police Commissioner Dr. Philip Mitna said a number of foreign citizens are among the group, which includes academics and a number of local guides,” the RPNGC wrote on Facebook, adding that kidnappers had demanded a ransom.

“The authorities, including police and local villagers are working around the clock to ensure the safe release of those held hostage,” they said.

More to follow…

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