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Nun recovering in Brisbane after PNG shooting

An elderly American nun is recovering in Brisbane after being shot in the head at point blank range by robbers in Papua New Guinea's northern Madang Province.

AAP reports that Sr Jane Frances Millan, aged about 70, was flown to Brisbane's Holy Spirit Hospital with wounds to the face, neck, shoulder and arm.

Sr Millan was driving her car in the Meiro area, outside Madang town, when would-be robbers fired at her through the car's window on Wednesday last week. A member of the Holy Spirit Order, she has been a missionary in Papua New Guinea for 41 years.

A spokesperson for the congregation at Alexishafen, near Madang, said surgeons in Brisbane had managed to remove pellets from a home-made gun from Sr Millan's head and she was now "in a good condition".

"We expect her back on about 1 May, after she has fully-recovered," the spokesperson said.

Originally from Ohio, Sr Millan had devoted her life to Papua New Guineans and had shown her commitment to the country by taking out PNG citizenship, the spokesperson said.

The Archbishop of Madang Diocese, Benedict ToVaripin, branded the shooting of Sister Millan as "a brutal and cowardly act" and expressed concern for the safety of religious sisters in the province.

"It's a miracle she is alive," said Archbishop ToVaripin, who added that Sr Millan had spent 30 years at the Malala Secondary School and only recently stepped down as its principal.

"Those who harbour raskols (rascals/criminals) in their homes and those who commit acts of violence are perpetuating the violence that ultimately injures those good people who we have the Christian duty to love and protect," he said.