Timeline Papua New Guinea (PNG)
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New Guinea Island is the 2nd
largest island in the world and is shared by West Papua, formerly
Irian Jaya, an Indonesian province, and the independent nation of
Papua New Guinea. The island of Bougainville was governed by Papua
(SFC, 5/17/96, p.A-16)(WUD, 1994, p.962)(SFC,
10/10/97, p.A13)(NH, 10/98, p.92)
A cultural turning point was caused when the Portuguese introduced
the sweet potato.
(SFC, 9/7/96, p.B4)
Papua New Guinea is about the size of California and counted some
869 tribal languages.
(SFC,11/14/97, p.D2)(Econ, 5/7/05, Survey p.11)
Papua New Guinea is an impoverished, corruption-riven country
struggling with an underfunded, undertrained police force struggling
to keep a lid on violence in society. The capital, Port Moresby, is
considered one of the world's most dangerous cities outside a war
400000BC - 48000BC
A human group, later called the Denisovans, lived
in Asia during this period. They then interbred with humans
expanding from Africa along the coast of South Asia. In 2010 fossil
evidence from a Siberian cave in 2008 revealed that their DNA was
related to the DNA of people from New Guinea, which contained 4.8%
Denisovan DNA. 3-5% of the DNA from native people of Papua New
Guinea, Australia, the Philippines and other nearby islands came
from Denisovans, who left Africa as far back as 800,000 BC. In 2014
scientists reported that a genetic between extinct Denisovans and
some modern-day Tibetans and Sherpas.
(SFC, 12/23/10, p.A4)(SSFC, 9/16/12, p.C11)(SFC,
50,000 BCE The stone age culture of this area goes
back this time.
(SFC, 5/29/96, p.A8)
c5,000BCE Research in 2003 indicated that bananas
and taro were cultivated in the highlands of Papua New Guinea as
long as 7,000 years ago. The first signs of human habitation in the
area occurred c5,800 BCE and included a change from forest to
grasslands and increase in charcoal in the sediments. The earliest
Asian influence on the islands occurred about 1,500 BCE.
1300BC The Lapita people took once again to the
open seas about this time, pushing east past the Solomon Islands to
the Bismarck archipelago and beyond to Vanuatu, Fiji and Samoa.
Theses Southeast Asian peoples had headed south from Taiwan to Papua
New Guinea and as far as the main Solomon islands, where they
stopped some 40,000 years ago.
1522 18 survivors of the
original Magellan expedition completed the circumnavigation of the
globe under Sebastian del Cano. Plumes of the bird of paradise from
New Guinea were first brought back to Europe.
(TL-MB, p.12)(NH, 9/96, p.8)
1767 Louis Antoine de
Bougainville of France sailed to the islands of New Guinea. He
encountered the ritual of gift giving to one's enemy, which
obligated the enemy to give back even more.
(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R4)
1878 Apr, A Fijian minister and
three teachers were killed and eaten by Tolai tribespeople on the
Gazelle Peninsula of Papua New Guinea. In 2007 descendants of the
Tolai apologized for their forefathers' actions. Englishman George
Brown directed and took part in a punitive expedition that resulted
in a number of Tolais being killed and several villages burnt down.
Official investigations by British colonial authorities in the
Pacific cleared him of criminal charges.
1906 Sep 1, Papua New Guinea
was placed under Australian administration, which continued to 1973.
5/28/11, SR p.17)
1910 Jun 2, Pygmies were
discovered in Dutch New Guinea (Papua).
1920-1950 Fore people of Papua New Guinea were
devastated by an epidemic of kuru, a brain-destroying disease caused
by abnormal proteins called prions.
(SFC, 4/11/03, p.A6)
1937 Jul 2, Amelia Earhart and
navigator Fred Noonan left Lae in Papua, New Guinea and disappeared
over the Pacific Ocean while attempting to make the first
round-the-world flight at the equator. They failed to arrive at
their scheduled stop at Howland Island. Noonan was alcoholic and had
been on a binge the night before. Radioman Leo Bellarts was the last
person to communicate with Earhart.
(SFC, 3/1/97, p.A8)(SFC, 5/20/97, p.A12)(AP,
7/2/97)(SFEC, 7/6/97, p.B10)
1942 Mar 7, Japanese troops
landed on New Guinea.
1942 Aug 26, Japanese troops
landed on New Guinea, Milne Bay.
1943 Jan 2, The Allies captured
Buna in New Guinea.
1943 Sep 4, Allied troops
captured Lae-Salamaua, in New Guinea.
1943 Dec 17, U.S. forces
invaded New Britain Island in New Guinea.
1944 Feb 15, Nathan Gordon
(1916-2008), US Navy pilot from Arkansas, and his crew made 4
separate flying boat landings to rescue a number of aviators from
B-52 bombers, which had been shot down while attacking Japanese
positions near Kavieng harbor on New Ireland Island, Papua New
Guinea. Gordon later became the longest-serving lieutenant governor
(SFC, 9/15/08, p.B8)
1944 Feb 29, US forces caught
Japanese troops off-guard and easily took control of the Admiralty
Islands in Papua New Guinea.
1944 Apr 10, A US B-24
Liberator was shot down over Madang while on a bombing mission to
knockout Japanese anti-aircraft positions in Papua New Guinea. 4
members of the crew exited the plane, were captured and executed. 8
others went down with the plane. In 2014 the remains of two missing
airmen were identified using DNA and other evidence.
(SFC, 8/8/14, p.A7)
1944 Apr 22, During World War
II, U.S. forces and Allies began invading Japanese-held New Guinea
with amphibious landings near Hollandia, New Guinea.
(AP, 4/22/97)(HN, 4/22/98)
1944 May 27, Gen. MacArthur
landed on Biak Island in New Guinea.
1944 Jul 5, The Japanese
garrison on Numfoor, New Guinea, tried to counterattack but was soon
beaten back by U.S. forces.
1945 Australian soldier Edward
Kenna (d.2009 at 90) single-handedly stormed a Japanese machine-gun
nest at Wewak, New Guinea, firing a Bren gun from his hip with enemy
bullets passing under his arms as he advanced. Kenna was awarded a
Victoria Cross for his valor.
1945 The Territory of New
Guinea under Australia merged with the Territory of Papua.
(WUD, 1994, p.962)
1950-1959 Cannibalism was banned in Papua New
(SFC, 4/11/03, p.A6)
1950-1959 The first outsiders to regularly contact
the Bahinemo people of Papua New Guinea in the 1950s were traders
looking for crocodile skins and carvings.
(SFC, 5/29/96, p.A8)
1951 The Lamington volcano
erupted and 2,942 people were killed.
(SFC, 1/19/02, p.A14)
1953 Dec, Ornithologist E.
Thomas Gilliard (d.1965 at age 52) and his wife, Margaret, arrived
in New Guinea to study birds in the Viktor Emanuel Range. Police
activities forced them to remake plans and they proceeded to survey
the Sepik River and to photograph the Iatmul and Sawos people who
lived along its banks.
(NH, 10/98, p.92)
1956 Evangelicals from the
Summer Institute of Linguistics, based in Dallas, began to translate
the Bible into local languages.
1959 Papua became independent
(WUD, 1994, p.962)
1961 Dec 1, The Territory of
New Guinea declared independence from the Netherlands.
(WUD, 1994, p.962)(SFC, 6/5/00, p.A8)
1963 Sovereignty over West
Papua was transferred from the Netherlands to Indonesia. A UN
approved referendum, involving some 1,000 handpicked pro-Jakarta
Papuans, ratified the annexation in 1969.
(WSJ, 6/6/00, p.A23)
1967 Australia pressured
mining-company officials to develop the Panguna mine on Bougainville
in the face of local opposition. Cabinet minutes of this were not
declassified until 1998.
(WSJ, 3/18/98, p.A14)
1968 In Papua New Guinea
Michael Somare (b.1936) was first elected to parliament. He later
served 3 terms as prime minister.
(Econ, 8/6/11, p.35)
1969 Jul 14 - 1969 Aug 2, In
West Papua the "Act of Free Choice" was conducted by the Indonesian
military forces. A UN approved referendum, involving 1,026
handpicked pro-Jakarta tribal chiefs, ratified Indonesia’s 1963
annexation of West Papua. Many voted at gunpoint in the unanimous
decision. In papers released in 2004 it was revealed that US
Ambassador Marshall Green in 1969 had foreknowledge that Indonesia
had no intention of allowing a Papuan vote that might prevent
Indonesia from annexing West Papua as a Indonesian province; he
further pointed out that any UN member would be unwise to expect
free or direct elections.
(WSJ, 6/6/00, p.A23)(SSFC, 9/1/02,
p.A15)(http://tinyurl.com/7cxq3)(Econ, 6/30/12, p.46)
1969 Australian bulldozers
arrive on Bougainville and began work at the Panguna mine. Local
women were unsuccessful in trying to stop the work.
(WSJ, 3/18/98, p.A14)
1971 Australia joined with New
Zealand and 14 independent of self-governing island nations to form
the South Pacific Forum. The name was changed in 2000 to Pacific
Islands Forum. Member states include: Australia, the Cook Islands,
the Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, the Marshall
Islands, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa,
the Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu. Since 2006,
associate members territories are New Caledonia and French
1975 Sep 1, Bougainville Island
announced the formation of the "Republic of the North Solomons," but
failed in its bid to secede from Papua New Guinea.
1975 Sep 16, Papua New Guinea
(PNG), a former Australian colony, became independent. Michael
Somare (b.1936) served as the first prime minister.
(WSJ, 12/20/96, p.B8)(WSJ, 3/18/98, p.A14)
1980 Mar 11, Julius Chan
(b.1939) succeeded Michael Somare as PM of Papua New Guinea.
1982 Former PM Michael Somare
(1975-1980) succeeded Julius Chan as prime minister of Papua New
Guinea. This was his 2nd term.
1985 Paias Wingti (b.1951)
succeeded Michael Somare as prime minister of Papua New Guinea and
served to 1988.
1988 Sir Rabbie Namaliu
(b.1947) began serving as Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea and
continued to 1992.
1988 Francis Ona threatened to
close down the Panguna open-pit copper mine on Bougainville. He
demanded half the profits for local landowners, $11.5 billion
compensation for environmental damage, and independence for
(WSJ, 3/18/98, p.A1,14)
1989 May, In Papua New Guinea
fighting on Bougainville Island forced the closure of Bougainville
Copper, one of the world’s ten largest copper mines. It was jointly
owned by RTZ-CRA and the government. Part of the cause for the civil
war was environmental damage caused by the huge Panguna copper mine
and insufficient land royalties paid to landowners.
(WSJ, 3/4/97, p.A15)(SFC, 10/10/97, p.A13)(WSJ,
1989 Bougainville islanders
formed the Bougainville Revolutionary Army (BRA) under former land
surveyor Francis Ona. Papua new Guinea imposed a naval and air
blockade. A counterinsurgent group called Resistance was formed.
(SFC, 12/29/01, p.A9)
1990 Francis Ona declared
independence and himself president of what he called Meekamuii.
Papua New Guinea tightened its blockade.
(SFC, 12/29/01, p.A9)
1990 In Papua New Guinea
soldiers withdrew from Bougainville following a ceasefire with the
Bougainville Revolutionary Army (BRA).
(Econ, 2/9/08, p.48)
1990 Businessmen and
politicians journeyed into the Hunstein Forest to collect the “x’s”
of clansmen on a deal to sell their forest for royalty payments. The
government in Port Moresby, the capital, has since suspended the
(SFC, 5/29/96, p.A8)
1992 Former PM Paias Wingti
(1985-1988) succeeded Rabbie Namaliu as Prime Minister of Papua New
Guinea and continued to 1994.
1994 Former PM Julius Chan
(1980-1982) succeeded Paias Wingti as Prime Minister of Papua New
Guinea and continued to 1997.
1994 In California at Stanford
Univ. 10 master artists from the Kwoma and Iatmul cultures of the
Sepik River of New Guinea carved poles for the New Guinea Sculpture
Garden near Robley Hall.
(SFC, 8/18/99, p.D5)
1994 Two volcanoes on the
opposite sides of one of the Duke of York Islands erupted for 4
months. Evacuees moved back to the islands but found that the lands
had begun sinking into the Pacific. [see 1999]
(SFC, 11/6/99, p.A24)
1996 Oct 12, Theodore Miriung,
head of the Bougainville Transitional Government of Papua, New
Guinea, was assassinated.
(SFC, 10/16/96, p.A10)
1996 Nov, A volcano on Manam
Island erupted. 7,000 villagers were on standby for evacuation.
(SFC, 11/16/96, p.C1)
1996 Edward Marriott, English
reporter, authored “The Lost Tribe,” an account of his search for
the “Stone Age” Liawep people.
(SFEC, 4/9/00, BR p.6)
1996 The 500 Bahinemo people
and the several hundred Bitara people were faced with the decision
over whether to allow logging in their 2,300 sq. miles of primeval
(SFC, 5/29/96, p.A8)
1997 Jan, The government of
Prime Minister Sir Julius Chan decided to hire foreign mercenaries
for $36 million to crush the revolt in Bougainville.
(WSJ, 3/18/98, p.A1)
1997 Feb, The government under
Prime Minister Sir Julius Chan hired Sandline Int’l., a company that
provides military training and support, to help put an end to the
bloody secessionist movement on Bougainville Island. Sandline in
turn subcontracted much of the work to the South African mercenary
firm Executive Outcomes, known for its effective work in Angola and
(WSJ, 3/4/97, p.A15)(SFC, 3/21/97, p.A20)
1997 Mar 1, Prime Minister
Julius Chan announced that the government would buy the 54% stake in
Bougainville Copper held by RTZ-CRA Ltd.
(WSJ, 3/4/97, p.A15)
1997 Mar 17, The government
fired army commander Brigadier Gen’l. Jerry Singirok. He refused to
accept the hiring of the British mercenary firm Sandline Int’l.
(SFC, 3/18/97, p.A12)
1997 Mar 19, In Port Moresby,
Papua New Guinea, police fired tear gas and warning shots at more
than 2,000 civilians protesting the government’s $27 million
contract with Sandline Int’l. to quell rebels on Bougainville.
(SFC, 3/20/97, p.A12)(AP, 3/29/03)
1997 Mar 26, Prime Minister
Julius Chan resigned due to the public uproar over plans to use
mercenaries in Bougainville.
(SFC, 3/26/97, p.A14)
1997 Jun, In elections the
government of Sir Julius Chan was swept out of office.
(WSJ, 3/18/98, p.A1)
1997 Jun, Papua New Guinea PM
Bill Skate formed a shaky coalition government: “...if I tell my
gang members to kill, they kill... there’s no other godfather. I’m
the godfather...” He later claimed to be drunk using the described
“Johnny Walker defense.” Skate resigned in 1999 after serving 18
months as prime minister.
1997 Jul, Gen’l. Jerry
Singirok, leader of the March revolt against prime minister Chan,
was decommissioned. Elections were completed and a new government
was to be announced at the end of the month.
(SFC, 7/11/97, p.A11)
1997 Nov 26, It was reported
that gas reserve of 4 trillion cubic feet around Kutubu, in
Papua New Guinea, was planned to be delivered to Australia across a
1,500 mile pipeline by Chevron Corp. by mid-2001.
1998 Jan 23, Warring parties on
Bougainville signed a peace agreement that would go into effect on
April 30. An estimated 10,000 people died during the 10 year civil
strife, mostly non-combatants from untreated disease. Some 1,000
rebels died and about 2,200 government sympathizers.
(WSJ, 3/18/98, p.A1)
1998 Apr 1, it was reported
that Port Moresby, a fortress city of 320,000, had 8% of the
nation’s population and 46% of its crime. Assault rifles were
reported to be becoming part of the weaponry of Huli tribesmen.
(WSJ, 4/1/98, p.A1)
1998 Jul 17, In Papua New
Guinea a 23-foot tidal wave followed a 7.0 earthquake at the Solomon
Islands and killed at 2,500-3,000 people. The villages of Malol,
Arop, Otto, Warupu and Sissano were turned into barren strips of
(SFC, 7/18/98, p.A10)(SFEC, 7/20/98, p.A1)(AP,
1999 Nov, It was reported that
the Duke of York Islands were sinking into the Pacific at 4-6 inches
per year. Government scientists recommended that the 20,000
residents be relocated.
(SFC, 11/6/99, p.A24)
1999 Sir Michael Morauta began
serving as prime minister of Papua New Guinea. He held office to
(Econ, 7/21/07, p.44)
2000 Jun 4, In West Papua
separatists made a declaration of independence. Thaha Alhamid read
the declaration before thousands gathered in Jayapura.
(SFC, 6/5/00, p.A8)
2000 Nov 16, A tidal wave
followed a magnitude 8.0 earthquake and left at least one person
dead and at some 5,000 people homeless.
(WSJ, 11/22/00, p.A1)(SFC, 11/25/00, p.D8)
2001 May 9, In Papua New Guinea
the Bougainville Provincial Peace Consultative committee adopted a
peace plan and opposing factions agreed to lay down their weapons.
The agreement entailed the PNG government’s accepting greater
autonomy for Bougainville and a referendum on independence to be
held between 2015-2020.
(SFC, 5/11/01, p.D8)(Econ, 2/9/08, p.48)
2001 Jun 26, In Papua, New
Guinea, police killed at least 3 students protesting government
austerity measures. Another 13 were wounded and rioting ensued.
(WSJ, 6/27/01, p.A1)
2001 Nov 11, In Indonesia Theys
Eluay (64), an independence movement leader in Irian Jaya, was found
strangled in his wrecked car and riots erupted. He had spent the
previous evening at dinner with local army commanders. In 2003 7
members of the Indonesia special forces were convicted for
involvement in the murder. Their maximum sentence was 31/2 years.
(SFC, 11/12/01, p.A12)(SFC, 11/27/01, p.A3)(SFC,
2001 Irian Jaya, the Indonesia
half of Papua New Guinea, was renamed Papua.
(Econ, 6/30/12, p.46)
2002 Jan 23, Papua New Guinea
voted to grant autonomy and the right to a referendum on total
independence to Bougainville.
(SFC, 1/24/02, p.A8)
2002 Jun 14, Voting began in
Papua New Guinea's general election with hopes that it would bring
some stability to the struggling Pacific nation. Former 2 time PM
Michael Somare returned to power.
(AP, 6/14/02)(Econ, 7/21/07, p.44)
2002 Jul 10, Two people were
hacked to death and a police station was overrun by armed tribesmen
who stole ballot boxes and freed prisoners in the latest
election-related violence in Papua, New Guinea.
2002 Aug 5, In Papua New Guinea
lawmakers elected founding father Michael Somare as the new prime
minister, as armed riot police surrounded Parliament.
2002 Sep, Mount Pago spewed
silicone ash and a serious eruption was expected. Parts of New
Britain Island were made uninhabitable.
(SFC, 9/7/02, p.A18)
2002 Sep 9, An earthquake
struck just off Papua New Guinea's north coast, killing 3 people and
causing a tidal wave that washed away at least 40 homes.
2003 May 2, In Papua New Guinea
a landslide buried a meeting hall under mud and debris, killing at
least eight people as they listened to election results.
2003 Jun 19, A team of
Australian researchers reported that bananas and taro were
cultivated ion the highlands of Papua New Guinea as long as 7,000
2003 Dec, Australia launched an
enhanced cooperation program for Papua New Guinea.
(Econ, 5/7/05, Survey p.11)
2003 The Indonesia half of
Papua New Guinea was split into two provinces, Papua and West Papua.
(Econ, 6/30/12, p.46)
2005 May, Papua New Guinea’s
Supreme Court ruled that Australian deployment of policemen to fight
lawlessness and corruption violated its constitution. This upset a
$760 million enhanced cooperation program (ECP) aimed at fighting
lawlessness and corruption.
(Econ, 8/27/05, p.36)
2005 Aug 31, A new report said
police last January in Papua New Guinea had collared a teen
suspected of picking the pocket of a soldier and dispensed their own
justice. The officers beat him, slammed his head into a truck and
2005 Sep 9, A magnitude 7.3
earthquake struck off the northeast coast of the Pacific island
nation of Papua New Guinea.
2006 Jan 20, In Papua New
Guinea a landslide sent mud and boulders smashing through a remote
village, killing at least eight people and leaving five more missing
and feared dead.
2006 Apr 24, The annual Goldman
Environmental Prizes were awarded in San Francisco. The winners
included Craig Williams (58) for helping to persuade Congress to
order the Defense Dept. to consider alternatives to incinerating
chemical weapons; Tarcisio Feitosa (35) of Brazil for his campaign
against rampant logging; Olya Melen (26) of Ukraine for her suits
forcing the government to scale back a large canal project impacting
wetlands; Yu Xiaogang (35) of China for his reports on damages
caused by new dams; Silas Siakor (36) of Liberia for his
documentation showing how logging was used to fund civil war; and
Anne Kajir of Papua New Guinea for her work to get reimbursements
from logging companies to peasants.
(WSJ, 4/24/06, p.B7)
2006 Aug 1, The Papua New
Guinea government declared a state of emergency in the resource-rich
Southern Highlands province. PM Somare said security forces had been
sent to the graft-ridden province and government controllers
appointed to try to restore good governance.
2006 Oct 15, Foreign Minister
Alexander Downer said Australia would cut ministerial contacts with
its northern neighbor until an investigation was held into the
escape from Papua New Guinea of a Solomon Islands official wanted on
child sex charges. Julian Moti, now in custody in the Solomons and
facing charges of illegal entry, was wanted in Australia on child
sex charges involving a 13-year-old girl in Vanuatu in 1997. Moti
was deported to Australia in 2007. His case was thrown out in
December after the court found that Australian officials had
colluded in his illegal deportation.
(AFP, 10/15/06)(Econ, 10/28/06, p.51)(Econ,
2007 Jun 30, Voting in general
elections began in Papua New Guinea and was scheduled to continue to
July 10. An average of 25 candidates stood for each of 109 seats.
Bad weather pushed completion to mid July. The population numbered
about 6 million.
(Econ, 7/7/07, p.42)(Econ, 7/21/07, p.44)
2007 The Beck's petrel was
photographed by an Israeli ornithologist in the Bismarck
Archipelago, a group of islands northeast of Papua New Guinea. The
pale-bellied bird species was last seen in 1929 and long thought to
2008 May 6, Two senior
Taiwanese officials resigned over the loss of millions of dollars in
a failed attempt to persuade Papua New Guinea to officially
2009 Jan 27, Pacific Island
leaders gathered in Port Moresby and threatened to expel Fiji from
their forum if coup leader Frank Bainimarama fails to announce
credible plans for elections.
2009 Mar 25, Conservation
International, a Washington D.C.-based conservation group, announced
the discovery of over 50 new animal species in a remote, mountainous
region of Papua New Guinea. The group spent the past several months
analyzing more than 600 animal species found during its expedition
to the South Pacific island nation in July and August.
2009 May 15, In Indonesia 6
Asia-Pacific countries, meeting at the World Oceans Conference,
agreed on a management plan to protect one of the world's largest
networks of coral reefs, promising to reduce pollution, eliminate
overfishing and improve the livelihoods of impoverished coastal
communities. The Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries
and Food Security covered an area defined as the Coral Triangle,
which spans Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea,
the Solomon Islands and East Timor.
2009 Aug 11, In Papua New
Guinea a charter plane carrying 13 people to a popular tourist site
vanished on approach in bad weather to an airport nestled in rugged
terrain. No survivors were found in the wreckage, which was located
the next day in the mountainous Kokoda region.
(AP, 8/11/09)(AP, 8/12/09)
2009 Dec 16, Papua New Guinea
police shot dead Kelly Kwalik, one of the senior commanders of the
Free Papua Movement (OPM).
2010 Jan 12, In Papua New
Guinea 38 people were killed and 18 others hospitalized after two
speeding buses crashed head-on while trying to drive around
2010 Feb 12, The WHO said a
cholera outbreak on Papua New Guinea has killed at least 40 people
over the last several months.
(SFC, 2/13/10, p.A2)
2010 Oct 6, Scientists unveiled
a spectacular array of more than 200 new species discovered in the
Pacific islands of Papua New Guinea, including a white-tailed mouse
and a tiny, long-snouted frog.
2011 Jun 13, In Papua New
Guinea Theo Abal (21), the adopted son of the acting PM Sam Abal,
slashed the throat of a 29-year-old hostess he met in a bar. Abal
was charged with murder after the body of the waitress was found at
the family home.
2011 Jun 19, In Papua New
Guinea an attacker fired 2 arrows hitting Matt Scheurich as the
28-year-old New Zealander relaxed on a river bank while his
girlfriend, a French doctoral student studying tribal life, swam in
the river. The attacker also threw rocks at Scheurich's head and
then attempted to sexually assault the French woman. The couple were
air lifted out and treated at Kiunga Hospital and then in Cairns,
2011 Jun 28, In Papua New
Guinea the Somare family, led by his wife, Lady Veronica Somare,
announced Michael Somare's retirement as Prime Minister and from
politics. Somare was still hospitalized in intensive care at Raffles
Hospital in Singapore at the time of his retirement, more than three
months after he underwent heart surgery in April 2011.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Somare)(Econ, 8/6/11, p.35)
2011 Aug 2, In Papua New Guinea
Peter O’Neill became prime minister after the speaker ruled the post
2011 Aug 19, Papua New Guinea,
96% Christian, announced that it has named August 26 as the National
Day of Repentence, a time for people to ask forgiveness for their
(SSFC, 8/25/13, p.M3)(http://tinyurl.com/lz8ba4x)
2011 Oct 13, A Papua New Guinea
Dash 8 passenger plane carrying 32 people crashed near the coast.
Witness reports said only four people on board had survived.
(AFP, 10/13/11)(SFC, 10/14/11, p.A2)
2011 Dec 12, Veteran PNG leader
Sir Michael Somare (75) was reinstated as Papua New Guinea's prime
minister when the Supreme Court ruled the election of Peter O'Neill
2011 Dec 15, Papua New Guinea
politics were deadlocked, with two men claiming to be prime
minister, two governments saying they hold power, rival police
chiefs maintaining the peace — and no one sure who actually was in
2011 Dec 20, Papua New Guinea’s
governor general Michael Ogio reversed course and threw his weight
behind the government of Peter O’Neill.
(SFC, 12/21/11, p.A7)
2011 The population of Papua
New Guinea was about 6.7 million.
(Econ, 8/6/11, p.34)
2012 Jan 24, In Papua New
Guinea as many as 60 people were feared dead after a massive
landslide wiped out an entire village in the rugged Southern
2012 Jan 26, Papua New Guinea
PM Peter O'Neill refused to step down despite a mutiny by soldiers
who seized the military headquarters and demanded that he cede power
to his ousted predecessor, former PM Michael Somare.
2012 Jan 28, In Papua New
Guinea Yaura Sasa, a retired colonel who attempted to take over the
military and ordered the prime minister to step down, was arrested
and charged with mutiny.
2012 Jan 30, An Indonesian
court indicted five activists for treason in the restive Papua
region after they raised an outlawed Papuan flag on Oct 19 and
declared its independence.
2012 Feb 2, A Papua New Guinea
ferry sank with 351 passengers and 12 crew on board. Rescuers
plucked 246 survivors from the sea off PNG’s east coast. Some 117
people remained missing.
(AP, 2/2/12)(AP, 2/3/12)(AFP, 2/5/12)
2012 Apr 5, Papua New Guinea's
parliament voted to postpone national polls for six months, sparking
2012 Apr 10, In Papua New
Guinea thousands rallied in Port Moresby to protest at any delays to
elections, seen as crucial as the country rests on the cusp of a
2012 Apr 17, A 7.0-magnitude
quake struck off the northeast of Papua New Guinea, but there was no
tsunami warning issued.
2012 May 21, Papua New Guinea's
Supreme Court called for veteran leader Sir Michael Somare (76) to
be reinstated over PM Peter O'Neill. 2 of the 5 justices abstained
from taking part in the ruling.
2012 May 24, Papua New Guinea
Deputy PM Belden Namah led officers into the Supreme Court to arrest
of Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia, one of three judges who affirmed
an earlier ruling that Somare is the nation's legitimate prime
2012 May 25, Rogue police
officers in Papua New Guinea blockaded Parliament for several hours,
a day after PM Peter O'Neill's government leveled sedition charges
against the country's chief justice.
2012 Jun 23, Voting began in
Papua New Guinea, a struggling Pacific nation which is on the brink
of a huge resources boom. 3,428 candidates vied for 109 of 111
parliamentary seats, with no single political party likely to win
enough seats to form government on its own.
(AFP, 6/23/12)(Econ, 8/4/12, p.36)
2012 Jul 13, Papua New Guinea
police said they have arrested 29 people accused of being part of a
cannibal cult in the jungle interior and charged them with the
murders of seven suspected witch doctors. The cult members allegedly
ate their victims' brains raw and made soup from their penises.
2012 Aug 3, Papua New Guinea
re-elected Peter O'Neill as the next leader, ending a turbulent
period in the nation's politics which at one point saw it with two
rival prime ministers. Sir Michael Somare (76) accepted the defeat
of his party in the vote and agreed to support O'Neill in his bid to
form the next government.
2012 Aug 13, Australia's PM
Gillard announced a sharp reversal in her government's policy on
asylum seekers, saying it will introduce legislation allowing their
deportation to the poor Pacific nations of Papua New Guinea and
Nauru to face lengthy stays in detention camps.
2013 Feb 6, In Papua New Guinea
a mob stripped, tortured and bound a woman (20) accused of
witchcraft, then burned her alive in front of hundreds of horrified
witnesses in Mount Hagen. Kepari Leniata had been accused of sorcery
by relatives of a 6-year-old boy who died in a hospital a day
earlier. On Feb 17 Janet Ware and Andrew Watea were charged with
murder over the slaying.
(AP, 2/8/13)(AP, 2/18/13)
2013 Apr 17, A magnitude 6.8
earthquake shook Papua New Guinea's northern coast, sending
residents fleeing for higher ground and items tumbling from shelves.
There were no immediate reports of serious damage.
2013 May, The government of
Papua New Guinea repealed the country's 42-year-old Sorcery Act. The
law had allowed for a belief in black magic to be used as a partial
legal defense for killing someone suspected of inflicting harm
through sorcery. It was repealed in response to recent violence.
2013 Jul 19, Australia's PM
Kevin Rudd, with PNG PM Peter O’Neill at his side, warned that all
refugees who arrive in the country by boat will be resettled on the
island nation of Papua New Guinea, a policy shift that rights groups
(AP, 7/19/13)(Econ, 7/27/13, p.34)
2013 Aug 29, In Papua New
Guinea Steven Tari and a follower were killed as they attacked
a young woman in Madang. Tari, an infamous cult leader known as
"Black Jesus" and suspected of cannibalism, had been on the run
since escaping from a Madang prison during a mass break-out with 48
others in March.
2013 Sep 10, In Papua New
Guinea a group of Australian and New Zealand trekkers, including one
woman, were savagely attacked and injured by bandits with two of
their guides hacked to death.
2013 Oct 16, An earthquake with
a magnitude of 7.1 struck off the coast of Papua New Guinea.
2013 Nov 7, China’s Vice
Premier Wang Yang said China will provide a concessionary loan of up
to $1 billion to Pacific island nations to support construction
projects in a part of the world where Beijing and Taiwan compete for
influence. He made the announcement at a forum with Pacific island
nations in Guangzhou at a meeting attended by representatives from
Micronesia, Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, the Cook Islands,
Tonga, Niue and Fiji.
2014 Feb 18, In Papua New
Guinea police opened fire after hundreds of men broke out of an
Australia-run detention camp for asylum seekers. One inmate was
(SFC, 2/19/14, p.A2)
2014 Apr 19, An earthquake with
a magnitude 7.8 was recorded off Papua New Guinea.
2014 Jun 10, The European
Commission delivered a formal warning to the Philippines and Papua
New Guinea over illegal fishing, a step that could lead to a ban on
exporting to the EU.
2014 Aug 29, In Papua New
Guinea Mount Tavurvur erupted early today in Rabaul district on New
Britain Island. The eruption forced several communities to evacuate
and some international flights were diverted.
Go to http://www.timelinesdb.com
Subject = Papua new Guinea
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