|The Goldie River crossing on the Kokoda Track,|
Papua New Guinea (Kokoda Track Foundation
The Kokoda Track in Papua New Guinea is currently closed after being blockaded by local landowners.The Koiari people are angry at what they claim is mis-management of the
96km (60 mile) trail. They say the Kokoda Track Authority owes local
The protestors are currently blocking the pass at Kovelo village, at the Kokoda end of the trail.The landowners are also threatening to close Kokoda airport.
“Those already on the trail can pass but no one will start walking
because our demands have not been met,” local spokesperson Ori Kennia
was quoted as saying.
A local group also closed the trail last year in protest against a
planned copper and gold mine due to be built on part of the track.The Kokoda Track is a rite of passage for many Australian travellers.
As well as the trek itself, it offers a chance to pay tribute to the
many soldiers who died there during World War II.
However, it is a challenging, mountainous trek. Two Australian walkers
died within days of each other on the track last month. This led the
Papuan Prime Minister to warn walkers that the trek shouldn’t be
Around 7,000 people a year complete the trek.