Papua New Guinea’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration, Rimbink Pato has said he will instruct the Immigration Division to return the passports of seven journalists from the Pacific region who are attending the Pacific Islands Forum Ministers meeting in PNG this month.
The seven journalists were detained by PNG’s Immigration officials shortly after arriving in Port Moresby this week.
Reporting from Port Moresby, SIBC’s Gina Maka’a says the PNG ForeignMinister confirmed he will instruct the PNG Immigration to release the passports.
“The PNG Immigration has this week held back the passports of seven journalists from the Pacific region who are in PNG to attend the PIS PIF forum regional media workshop ahead of the 46th Forum Ministers Meeting next week. Officially opening the workshop today, Mr. Pato confirmed to the journalists that he will ask for the release of the passports from the Immigration Division.”
The Foreign Minister said he understands in the past a special arrangement was provided for journalists who attend the ForumMinisters meeting.
“And he said from what he understands, in the past a special arrangement should happen for journalists who will attend such Forum Ministers Meetings. However, for any journalist who would like to attend the meeting in PNG must apply for a journalist visa through the Office of the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea.”