Mobile phones exacerbate PNG tribal violence

9:29 am on 14 June 2018

Mobile phones in PNG are contributing to worse destruction and more killings between warring tribes, an international charity says.

PNG Red Cross Bougainville branch coordinator Aidah Kenneth (left) demonstrates how to stabilize an arm fracture, with the help of first aid trainers Pais Tawoanea (center) and Benedine Siunai (right).

PNG Red Cross Bougainville branch coordinator Aidah Kenneth (left) demonstrates how to stabilize an arm fracture, with the help of first aid trainers Pais Tawoanea (center) and Benedine Siunai (right). Photo: ICRC / Raphael Dallaire Ferland

Papua New Guinea's highlands have been plagued by tribal fighting particularly in the aftermath of a devastating magnitude 7.5 earthquake in February.

The deputy head of mission for the International Committee of the Red Cross in PNG, Ahmad Hallak, said over the past 20 years modern technology had made the consequences of tribal fights much worse.

"Definitely the presence of more advanced weapons, of technology like mobile phones which allow for communicating and coordinating attacks, they have definitely aggravated the situation and led to the sort of consquences that might not have been seen in previous decades," Mr Hallak said.

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