Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

NZDF involvement in Solomon Islands scaled back

28 October 2003 Media Statement

NZDF involvement in Solomon Islands to be scaled back

In keeping with the overall scaling down of the Regional Assistance Mission in Solomon Islands (RAMSI), New Zealand’s military contingent will be decreased over the coming months, Minister of Defence Mark Burton announced today.

During their recent visit to the Solomon Islands, Prime Minister Helen Clark and Mark Burton were briefed on the good progress being made by RAMSI, and advised that, if such progress continued, a reduction in military presence would soon be appropriate.

Currently, New Zealand has 230 Defence Force (NZDF) personnel in RAMSI, including a detachment of four helicopters, an infantry company, headquarters support staff, logistics, communications, an engineering element, and a small medical group, working alongside Pacific partners in the Australian-led mission.

The helicopter detachment is expected to remain in the Solomon Islands until January 2004. It will then likely be reduced to two helicopters, which should return to New Zealand at the end of May 2004. The infantry company will be replaced, probably by an NZDF platoon, which will join a multi-nation Pacific company and remain in the Solomon Islands until mid-2004. In addition, the 25 support staff will also likely remain until May 2004.

Mark Burton said that scaling back the Defence Force component was the next logical step in achieving RAMSI’s goals.

“To date, this deployment has been very successful, with all NZDF elements working well in support of the police contingent. Our personnel are also playing a key role in facilitating civil and humanitarian assistance, providing helicopter transport, and engineers for refurbishment of facilities. They will continue in these roles, but in a reduced capacity.

“The military phase of RAMSI was always going to be the first step in assisting the Solomon Islands government to restore stability to their nation—a process which, by its very nature will take time. Although our military presence is being scaled back, New Zealand continues to play a significant role in supporting the Solomon Islands, with 35 New Zealand police officers scheduled to remain there for up to two years. In addition, NZAID is providing funding for a range of crucial programmes, including basic education, electricity supply, improved governance, and public sector reform.
“This phase of RAMSI has proven to be a successful example of regional partners working together to support the restoration of legitimate Solomon Islands’ government authority.

“The return of stability to the Solomon Islands is vital for the security of our region. The men and women of the NZDF continue to make a value contribution to RAMSI, and their outstanding work is playing a significant part in achieving this goal,” said Mark Burton.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tax Working Group’s Road Map

Trying to analyse the interim report on the Tax Working Group (TWG) is like trying to review an entire All Blacks game, but at the half- time mark.

With so much still to be finalised, Sir Michael Cullen and his colleagues are going to need all the All Blacks’ fabled finishing skills to get a coherent, fiscally neutral package together by the February 2019 deadline. More>>

 

Meth Testing Report: Housing NZ "To Right Wrong"

Phil Twyford “Housing NZ acknowledges that around 800 tenants suffered by either losing their tenancies, losing their possessions, being suspended from the public housing waiting list, negative effects on their credit ratings or, in the worst cases, being made homeless.” More>>

ALSO:

No Reshuffle: Meka Whaitiri Removed As A Minister

Meka Whaitiri will be removed as a Minister with immediate effect... The decision was made after receiving a report into an incident that occurred on 27 August in Gisborne, involving Meka Whaitiri and one of her staff. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity Bill: Making History For Women’s Pay

The Equal Pay Amendment Bill, introduced to the House today, will make it easier for workers to make a pay equity claim , using a more simple and accessible process within New Zealand’s existing bargaining framework. More>>

ALSO:

Suffrage 125: NZ A Trailblazer For Women

“We acknowledge the work of Kate Sheppard, Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia, and all of the suffragists who tirelessly campaigned for the vote… Today we also need to ask each other: how we can continue to make our country a fairer and better place to continue the legacy of the suffragists.” More>>

ALSO:

Asylum: Refugee Quota Increasing To 1500

“The quota increase will take place from July 2020. In the meantime, we will work to increase the number and spread of refugee resettlement and support services. We need to make sure we’re prepared for this change in policy.” More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels