Sudden death of Papal Nuncio in PNG/Solomons
Apostolic Nuncio to Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands Archbishop Hans Schwemmer died in Cairns yesterday after a sudden illness.
A statement from the Bishops' Conference said he had suffered a "mild intermittent illness" for several days, and died shortly after his transfer from Port Moresby to the intensive care unit at Calvary Hospital, Cairns, yesterday morning.
56 year old Archbishop Schwemmer, a native of Bavaria in Germany, was appointed to the post in 1997 after serving in other diplomatic missions in India, South America and Europe. He was Dean of the Diplomatic community on Port Moresby at the time of his death.
Following the death of Australian Franciscan Fr Fabian Thom earlier this ear, he spoke out against violence in PNG society, suggesting the priest's death was one of a series of crimes "that cast doubt on Papua New Guinea's claim to be a Christian country".
Catholic Bishops Conference of PNG/Solomons