Ferns, Nicholas: Papua New Guinea 40 years after independence

Ferns, Nicholas

PNG marks 40 years of independence, still feeling the effects of Australian colonialism‘, The Conversation, 16 September 2015

September 16 marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the sovereign nation of Papua New Guinea. Celebrations are being held throughout the country.

It is worth remembering that Australia was the country that granted independence to Papua New Guinea. For almost 70 years, Australia maintained colonial rule over the eastern half of New Guinea. Unfortunately, this fact is largely absent in contemporary discussions of relations between the countries.

When Australia’s “colonial” history is mentioned, it almost always refers to the period 1788-1901. Little attention is given to Australia’s 20th-century empire of Papua New Guinea and Nauru.

The article redresses the balance with a brisk outline of a century of history.

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