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NZ police officer takes on key role in Solomons

Hon Phil Goff Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Hon George Hawkins Minister of Police

6 July 2005

NZ police officer takes on key role in Solomons

The government has welcomed the appointment of a senior New Zealand Police officer to a key position in the Royal Solomon Islands Police (RSIP).

Graham Emery will take up a two-year appointment as Deputy Commissioner, Operations Support, under a new management structure. He previously commanded the NZ Police contingent to the Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI).

The appointment came after Police Minister George Hawkins confirmed an offer by the New Zealand government to fund the position of deputy commissioner during a recent visit to Honiara.

"The New Zealand contingent has being doing a magnificent job in the Solomons. Their dedication and professionalism has made a huge impression on both government officials and the communities they're working with," Mr Hawkins said.

Foreign Minister Phil Goff said Deputy Commissioner Emery's appointment would help further stabilise the situation in the Solomons.

"RAMSI has worked closely with the Solomon Islands government to restore an effective and fair justice system, and the new management structure of the RSIP will build on that success.

"New Zealand is committed to international peace-building. Our experience in the Solomons shows how a sustained, broad-ranging approach involving aid, security, and support for civil society, justice and human rights can help people rebuild a society that had been shattered by conflict," Mr Goff said.

Deputy Commissioner Emery has 20 years of policing experience and is a qualified lawyer. His new role will involve management of RSIP training, intelligence, forensics, professional standards and prosecutions.

ENDS

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