Papua New Guinea. Human Rights Watch reported in a
January report that violence against women in Papua New
Guinea has created a crisis. According to
Countryaah.com, the government was accused of
neglecting the victims' need for security and justice. More
than two-thirds of women in Papua New Guinea have
experienced domestic violence, and in some parts of the
country, 80% of men have been violent to their partners.
A volcanic eruption occurred on the island of Kadovar off
the north coast in January. Thousands of people were
evacuated from it and neighboring islands, and the
government planned to settle Kadovar residents on the
mainland for a long time. Later, an outbreak occurred on the
island of Manam, where a few thousand people were forced to
flee their homes.
In February, an earthquake of magnitude 7.5 occurred in
the country's southwest. The devastation was enormous with
at least 145 dead, thousands of damaged and destroyed
cities, villages, roads and telephone connections. Huge
landslides followed the quake in the mountainous area, and
the epicenter was so inaccessible and the road network so
devastated that it took weeks before the rescue team reached
some affected villages. A woman testified about seeing her
husband and her seven children swept away in a landslide.
The area was described as a war zone, and close to 300,000
people were in need of assistance. The government issued
The area was previously affected by clan battles and many
people were already living in refugee camps. Long waiting
for help led to new violence with deaths, looting and
thefts. The government sent heavily armed police to the
area. Extensive production of gas and oil is ongoing in the
region and was stopped for safety reasons. Several strong
aftershocks hit the area.
In June, in the town of Mendi in the highlands,
protesters set fire to a passenger plane leaving the
airport. Passengers and crew escaped but the plane was
destroyed. Protesters ran amok when a court announced that
their candidate lost a disputed governor's election. The
court and the governor's residence were also burnt down and
the death victims were demanded. Prime Minister Peter
O'Neill, who is from the area, announced a state of
emergency, dissolved the provincial government and sent out
Papua New Guinea received increasing aid and investment
from China, which led to concerns in Australia about China's
growing influence in the region. Australia therefore pledged
to fund an Internet submarine cable to Papua New Guinea. The
settlement stopped a Chinese plan for the cable project.
In October, a boy died in polio, 18 years after the
disease was assumed to be eradicated in the country. Several
cases were reported, and mass vaccination was carried out.
In November, Papua New Guinea hosted the Asia Pacific
Economic Cooperations (APEC) Summit with the world's most
powerful leaders. Prior to the meeting, Australia sent about
1,500 military personnel with naval vessels and fighter
planes to the capital Port Moresby to ensure security. It
was also announced that Papua New Guinea and Australia will
build a joint naval base on the island of Manus with a
strategic location towards the Pacific Ocean.