Angry landowners force PNG airport closure

Landowners in Papua New Guinea have shut down the airport on Manus Island over their demands for work connected to the Australian Government's asylum seeker processing centre.

On Monday a group of landowners placed safety cones and baggage trolleys onto the runway at the island's airport.

The action has forced the cancellation of flights from the capital, Port Moresby.

The landowners have been demanding contracts for work connected to the processing centre.

Spokesman Porou Papi says they took the action because the provincial government has not responded to their petition for contracts.

"We will remove the cone marks and the trolleys until the governor come and see us (sic)," he said.

Manus governor Charlie Benjamin says police have been sent to clear the runway and he will meet the landowners on Tuesday.

Under Australia's new immigration laws, asylum seekers who arrive by boat will be sent to Nauru or Papua New Guinea's Manus Island for processing.

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