IOM Builds Peace for Conflict-torn Communities in Papua New Guinea

Signing of the peace agreement in Kagua-Erave. © IOM/ Sebastian Hurokoli

Port Moresby – The Southern Highlands Province, Papua New Guinea (PNG), witnessed on 21 December a historic moment as four previously warring communities in the Kagua-Erave District (Pira 1, Pira 2, Mapata 1 and Mapata 2) signed a peace agreement to end years of fighting between the wards.

Throughout the time of conflicts that began in October 2022, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has been collaborating closely with the Kagua-Erave District and Southern Highlands Provincial Administration. Such collective efforts helped facilitate mediation between the warring parties and contributed to the development of the Peace Agreement.

Working with the local communities to arrange community sessions on peacebuilding framework, IOM also supported the construction of a health centre and a market facility in the Kagua-Erave District, providing the community members with access to health care, and a facility for women to sell their products and produce.

Meanwhile, IOM conducted peacebuilding trainings for community leaders, ‘warlords’ and ex-combatants, and the covered topics included gender sensitization and youth advocacy. These actions were crucial to paving the way for a peace accord.

"Peace has finally arrived after years of suffering and loss,” said Serhan Aktoprak, IOM PNG Chief of Mission. “Now that we have achieved it, we should maintain and direct all our energy to fighting illiteracy, unemployment and social problems to actively eradicate the risks of future conflicts. IOM is ready to support all efforts to help the people of this beautiful land prosper.

Welcoming the vision of peace for his community, Yarks Keria, an ex-combatant, stated so many things that were earned through sacrifice and hard work were destroyed, and innocent lives were lost to the conflicts. As of today, on behalf of the youth, we say no to this.”

Grateful for the trust and cooperation of the involved local communities, IOM will continue its efforts to deliver peace across Papua New Guinea.

IOM’s peacebuilding interventions in the Kagua-Erave District have been financially supported by the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund.


For further information, please contact IOM Port Moresby, Eliorah Malifa WhatsApp: +675 7040 1526, Email: or Peter Murorera, +675 7090 3603, Email: 

SDG 6 - Clean Water and Sanitation
SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
SDG 16 - Peace Justice and Strong Institutions