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Aspects of conflict in the contemporary Papua New Guinea Highlands

CollectionsANU Department of Pacifc Affairs (DPA) formerly State, Society and Governance in Melanesia (SSGM) Program
Title: Aspects of conflict in the contemporary Papua New Guinea Highlands
Author(s): Weiner, James
McLeod, Abby
Yala, Charles
Keywords: Papua New Guinea
highlands conflict
southern highlands
communal life
Melanesian conflicts
conflict settlement strategies
Date published: 2002
Publisher: Canberra, ACT: State, Society and Governance in Melanesia (SSGM) Program, The Australian National University
Series/Report no.: State, Society and Governance in Melanesia (SSGM) discussion paper series: 2002/4
To the foreign observer, Papua New Guinea is readily associated with violent gang crime, tribal fighting and electoral violence. In the Highlands region, high-powered weapons render tribal fighting increasingly problematic, particularly in provinces hosting large-scale resource extraction operations such as Southern Highlands Province and Enga. This discussion paper, based on presentations made to an AusAID seminar, provides an overview of aspects of conflict in the contemporary Papua New Guinea Highlands. Beginning in the Southern Highlands, Weiner explores the nature of conflict in areas surrounding the Kutubu Oil Project, examining not only contemporary land disputes, but also the cultural milieu in which they occur. Moving to Enga, Yala investigates the similarities and differences between ‘traditional’ and contemporary conflict in the Highlands, drawing primarily upon his personal experiences of conflict in Enga. McLeod then provides perspectives on conflict in Simbu Province, with a particular focus upon the nature of ‘social rules’ in that area. Collectively, these essays, all of which are based upon the authors’ extensive experiences in Papua New Guinea, seek to provide an insight into the nature of contemporary conflict in the Papua New Guinea Highlands.
ISSN: 1328-7854


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