Crime & Justice

One of four hostages released in Papua New Guinea

Sydney, Australia, Feb 23 (EFE).- A woman from of a team of scientists taken hostage in the remote highlands of Papua New Guinea has been released, but a professor at an Australian university and two others remain held captive, according to police.

A group of about 20 armed men abducted the group on Sunday and reportedly demanded a ransom of 3.5 million kina (about $970,000) from the PNG and Australian governments for the hostages’ release.

The remaining three captives are in reasonable health, but are being held in difficult terrain, PNG Police Commissioner David Manning said Wednesday night, according to local news outlet EMTV.

“The release of one female Papua New Guinean captive is a positive outcome, and negotiations continue for the safe release of the remaining two female Papua New Guineans and the male New Zealand citizen,” Manning said.

The professor is a New Zealander working for an Australian university, and not Australian as has been previously reported.

Prime Minister James Marape told the gang Wednesday night that they have “no place to hide” and called on them to settle things “the Melanesian way.”

The scientists were “not up there looking for money, they’re working there to protect and promote our home up there in the Mountains of Bosavi as a rich biodiversity site and an archaeological site,” he said, according to Australian public broadcaster ABC.

The authorities have not said who the armed group is, nor the reason for the release of the hostage.

ABC reported that another expatriate working in the remote area has been escorted out by villagers for his safety. EFE


Related Articles

Back to top button