Last Updated: Monday, 30 May 2016, 07:59 GMT

Ban voices concern about leadership deadlock in Papua New Guinea

Publisher UN News Service
Publication Date 13 December 2011
Cite as UN News Service, Ban voices concern about leadership deadlock in Papua New Guinea, 13 December 2011, available at: [accessed 30 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed concern today about mounting political tensions in Papua New Guinea, where two prominent politicians each say they are the Pacific country's rightful leader.

Papua New Guinea's Parliament voted earlier this year to elect Peter O'Neill as Prime Minister after determining that the post was vacant when incumbent Sir Michael Somare spent five months abroad for medical treatment, according to media reports.

The reports indicate that the country's Supreme Court has since ruled that Parliament acted illegally, and that Sir Michael – who has returned to Papua New Guinea – should be reinstated.

In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban called on all sides "to exercise maximum restraint and to avoid an escalation of the situation."

He added that he hoped the crisis would be "resolved soon in a peaceful manner in accordance with the constitution."

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