Mutiny in Papua New Guinea 2012
The 2012 mutiny in Papua New Guinea was an attempt to reinstate former Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea , Michael Somare .
The mutiny began on January 26, 2012 when a group of soldiers led by Colonel a. D. Yaura Sasa placed the commander of the Papua New Guinea Defense Force (PNGDF), Brigadier General Francis Agwi, under house arrest. Sasa claimed that he had been appointed commander of the PNGDF by former Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Michael Somare , and asked Governor General Michael Ogio Somare to reinstate him as head of government. The mutiny, code-named "Operasin Strongim Konstituson, Operation Protection of the Constitution", was related to the dispute over the office of Prime Minister between Somare and Peter O'Neill .
In August 2011, Peter O'Neill became Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea. Somare, who had ruled the country for decades, was overthrown and replaced by O'Neill in August 2011 when his post was declared vacant while he was in Singapore for medical treatment . In December 2011, the Supreme Court of Papua New Guinea found that Somares' removal from office was unlawful and requested his reinstatement.
This led to a political stalemate in which Somare called on the PNGDF commander, Brigadier General Francis Agwi, to intervene on his behalf. Agwi refused, however, and stayed on O'Neill's side. O'Neill was supported by most of the members of Parliament and remained in office. As reported by The Australian newspaper , Bertha Somare, the daughter of the former prime minister, told journalists that the decision to replace Francis Agwi with Yaura Sasa was made by her father and his shadow cabinet. Sasa served as a defense attaché in the Papua New Guinea embassy in Indonesia prior to retiring from the military .
The January 26, 2012 mutiny was the second military mutiny in Papua New Guinea. The first rebellion occurred on July 28, 1997, when a special unit of the PNGDF occupied the Murray barracks. Prime Minister Bill Skate made concessions to the soldiers involved in the mutiny after the insurgents released the armed forces commander, Brigadier General Leo Nuia, who had previously been taken hostage.
At 3 a.m. on January 26, 20 to 30 soldiers under the command of Yaura Sasa occupied the headquarters of the armed forces in the Taurama barracks outside the capital Port Moresby . Several shots were fired. The mutineers took Agwi to the Murray barracks near the center of the capital, where he was placed under house arrest. At a press conference on January 26, 2012, Yaura Sasa did not want his actions to be understood as a coup. He called on Governor General Michael Ogio to reinstate former Prime Minister Michael Somare. He presented Parliament with a seven-day ultimatum. It should reverse the decisions of the previous year and restore political order. Otherwise, Sasa wanted to take the necessary steps to restore "respect for the constitution". O'Neill relieved Secretary of Defense Guma Wau and appointed Deputy Prime Minister Belden Namah as acting Secretary of Defense.
On the evening of January 26, 2012, Belden Namah announced that most of the 30 soldiers involved in the mutiny had been arrested. The mutiny would have failed. In response to reports that Somare had initiated the mutiny, Namah declared that Somare had "gone mad". The rebel commander, Agwi, was released. On January 27, 2012, armed rebels were still in the Taurama barracks. Yaura Sasa and around 20 supporters refused to leave the barracks and demanded a full pardon for himself and his supporters. On the night of January 28-29, Sasa was arrested at a house in Boroko, a suburb of Port Moresby. The soldiers remaining in the barracks handed over their weapons and vehicles to Belden Namah on January 30, 2012, who had negotiated the non-violent end to the mutiny. In return, they received a general amnesty.
- ↑ Coup in Papua New Guinea apparently failed Wiener Zeitung (accessed January 26, 2012)
- ↑ a b c d Liam Lox: (January 26, 2012) Rebel soldiers stage mutiny in PNG ABC News (accessed January 26, 2012)
- ↑ Liam Lox: (January 26, 2012) PNG court restores Somare as PM ABC News (accessed January 26, 2012)
- ↑ (January 26, 2012) Dumped prime minister Sir Michael Somare ordered army mutiny (accessed January 26, 2012)
- ↑ Ilya Gridneff: (January 27, 2012) Uncertainty in PNG as coup leader frees hostage The Sydney Morning Herald (accessed January 31, 2012)
- ↑ Doug Cooper: (September 15, 1997) New Gov't Does Not Quell Unrest In PNG The Militant , Issue No. 31, September 15, 1997, In: World History Archives, Hartford Web Publishing, (accessed January 31, 2012)
- ↑ (January 26, 2012) Official statement from Colonel Sasa The Australian (accessed January 26, 2012)
- ↑ (January 27, 2011) Mutiny! ( Memento of the original from February 1, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Post-Courier (accessed January 30, 2011)
- ↑ Eoin Blackwell: (January 26, 2012) PNG deputy PM issues ultimatum The Sydney Morning Herald (accessed January 26, 2012)
- ↑ (January 26, 2012) Somare fails Mutiny Focus (accessed January 26, 2012)
- ↑ AAP: (January 27, 2012) Rogue PNG colonel Yaura Sasa demands full pardon Herald Sun (accessed January 27, 2012)
- ↑ (January 29, 2012) Papua New Guinea coup leader Yaura Sasa faces court following his arrest The Australian (accessed January 30, 2012)
- ↑ Todagia Kelola: (January 30, 2011) Mutiny leader locked up! ( Memento of the original from February 2, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Post-Courier (accessed January 30, 2011)
- ↑ (January 30, 2012) Soldiers surrender! ( Page no longer available , search in web archives ) Info: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Post-Courier (accessed January 31, 2012)