Wewak POW Camp was located near the beach at Kreer on the north coast of New Guinea in East Sepik Province (ESP) in Papua New Guinea (PNG). To the west is Mission Point and Wewak Town (Wewak Point). To the north is Wewak Harbor.
Used as a Japanese Army Prisoner Of War (POW) camp for Allied aviators captured in the vicinity by the Japanese Army between 1943 until early 1944. Likely, controlled by a Kempeitai (Kempei-Tai) military police unit. The camp consisted of a perimeter barbed wire fence with bamboo cages and native huts. Some American POWs were transported to Rabaul then onto Japan. Of those who remained interned at this camp, none survived. None of the Wewak POWs were reported to the red cross or official channels but many were mentioned in Japanese radio broadcasts as "prisoners of the Japanese Army at Wewak".
Observations by Indian POWs
The camp was observed by several Indian POWs being used as laborers by the Japanese at Wewak. When they were liberated, one reported that he has seen twenty personnel in the barbed wire enclosure and spoke with a "Major" [possibly Major Ralph Cheli] during November 1943. When the Indian POWs passed the area during May 1944 he observed forty people inside. Returning in May 1944, he saw nobody and the area had been bombed.
Bombed by Allies
During May 1944 bombed by the Allies destroying the camp. Likely, the prisoners were killed in the attack or the remaining prisoners were executed afterwards.
POWs reported as prisoners at Wewak
1. SSgt Roy Showers, radio B-25D 41-30046 reported by Tokyo radio March 1944
2. SSgt Wilfred J. Paquette, engineer B-25D 41-30046 reported by Tokyo radio March 1944
3. SSgt Fred D. Nightwine, gunner B-25D 41-30046 reported by Tokyo radio March 1944
Kreer is today a local market named Kreer market and Kreer village.
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January 20, 2018