Tropicair said eight armed men approached the plane as it was refuelling in Gasmata, on the island of New Britain and forced the pilot to take off. A company spokesman said there were no other passengers on board. “Upon arrival at the airstrip, the men stole the baggage and cargo that was on board and fled,” Matthew Brutnall said. “The captain wasn’t injured in the incident.”
Papua New Guinea police said they are probing the incident. West New Britain Police commander John Midi said that “police have no details on the cargo that was stolen”.