Bougainville Island has been part of Papua New Guinea since 1884. But the people
who live there are more similar to people from the Solomon Islands, which are
In 1988 an uprising began on Bougainville Island. The local people wanted independence.
For many years rebels fought against the government. More than 20,000 people
died during the conflict.
In 1998, a ceasefire was signed. Peacekeepers arrived, including New Zealand
soldiers. Three years later a peace agreement was signed. Papua New Guinea agreed
Bougainville Island could become independent. The final stages of the agreement
are still being discussed. In a few years Bouganville's first elections will
The war has left many people homeless. The economy has still not recovered.