Papua New Guinea declares 14-day state of emergency amidst riots, looting that have left 15 people dead

Amidst riots and looting in the streets, Papua New Guinea's prime minister has called for a 14-day state of emergency in the capital on Thursday.  

In the capital on Wednesday evening, protests turned to violence after police officers, soldiers, and prison guards had unexplained missing payments for work, Radio France International reported.  

"Today we call for a state of emergency for 14 days in our nation's capital," Prime Minister James Marape announced on Thursday. At least 15 people have reportedly been killed during the unrest in Port Moresby and Lae.  

People could be seen carrying away merchandise from storefronts and looting businesses amid the chaos.  

Footage posted to X showed billowing smoke and flames of rioters burning down buildings and causing widespread destruction.  

Subsequent violence and unrest spread nearly 200 miles away, north of the capital.  

The largest hospital in Port Moresby reportedly had treated 25 people with gunshot wounds, as well as six others who had suffered knife injuries.  

Buildings and cars were lit on fire and people ran in the streets. A group of rioters gathered near the prime minister's office in Port Moresby and tore the security gate off as well as torched a police car.  

National Capital District Governor Powes Parkop said that the destruction in the city is an "unprecedented level of strife." 

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