Parliament

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

 

Goff Welcomes First Weapons Surrender In Solomons

Goff Welcomes First Weapons Surrender In Solomon Islands


Foreign Minister Phil Goff today welcomed the first surrender of around 40 weapons from a former militant group, the Isatabu Freedom Movement, to the International Peace Monitoring Team (IPMT) in the Solomon Islands as a promising start.

"Today's hand over ceremony in the Eastern Guadalcanal district was an important event for the ex-combatants, their families, the local communities, and the Guadalcanal Provincial Government," Mr Goff said. "It represents a formal closure for one group of Solomon Islanders to the violence which has had such a devastating impact on the country and its people.

"Although the deadline initially set by the Townsville Peace Agreement for the surrender has been extended by one month, it is good to see the Isatabu militants in the east of Guadalcanal Island are ahead of schedule in handing over their weapons to the IPMT.

"The weapons, handed over by 50 ex-IFM combatants, have been checked against an inventory by IPMT members, labelled and placed in the container. The container was locked under the IPMT’s supervision.

"The monitors will not guard the weapons. The process relies on good faith and commitment, which the peace monitors will encourage by helping build confidence.

"It is a welcome occasion for all Solomon Islanders committed to the peace process, and it is pleasing that members of the New Zealand Police, Defence Force and Ministry of Foreign Affairs have been able to play such an important role.

"Further weapons surrender ceremonies are planned in the coming weeks, involving both ex-militant groups (Isatabu Freedom Movement and Malaita Eagle Force

"Tensions, however, remain in the Solomon Islands and the situation remains fragile. It will take a great effort from all sides to maintain the momentum of the peace process. New Zealand will continue to do all we can to support the people of the Solomon Islands with the challenges which lie ahead."

ENDS


Background.

There are 14 New Zealanders now in the Solomon Islands. The Deputy Leader of the IPMT is MFAT official Mr Chris Seed. Other New Zealanders are Police and Defence personnel, working as peace monitors in team sites (a NZ Police officer is leader of one of the Honiara teams), coordinating IPMT operations, and providing communications and other support to team sites. The total IPMT size is currently 39, and will be 49 when second Australian deployment arrives next week. There are currently 5 container sites, 3 on Guadalcanal and 2 on Malaita. Teams are at present located in Honiara and Auki on Malaita. When the full Team arrives there will be additional team sites to the east and west of Honiara.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Why New Zealand Needs To Change Its Defence Habits


In a flashback to the military displays of days gone by, one of our frigates recently joined a Carrier Strike show of force in the South China Sea, en route to a joint military exercise in Singapore with our traditional allies, called BersamaGold21. Reportedly, Anna Powles, from the Centre of Defence and Security Studies at Massey University felt this to be a case of us doing our bit to uphold international law, and the right of free transit through the region in question... More>>

Government: New COVID-19 Protection Framework Delivers Greater Freedoms For Vaccinated New Zealanders


Vaccinated New Zealanders will regain everyday freedoms when the country moves to a new simplified COVID-19 Protection Framework that doesn’t rely on nationwide lockdowns as the main measure to stop the virus spreading. In a suite of announcements that establish a pathway out of restrictions the Government is also providing up to $940 million per fortnight to support businesses through the challenging period... More>>

ALSO:





 
 

Government: New Zealand Secures Historic Free Trade Deal With The United Kingdom
New Zealand and the United Kingdom have agreed in principle the details of a historic Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which will further accelerate our COVID-19 economic recovery say Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister for Trade and Export Growth Damien O’Connor... More>>

ALSO:

Ombudsman: Launches Investigation Into MIQ Booking System
The Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier is launching a broad investigation into the Managed Isolation and Quarantine (MIQ) booking system after receiving hundreds of complaints... More>>

ALSO:



National: Launches Back In Business Plan

Leader of the Opposition Judith Collins has today launched National’s detailed plan to save livelihoods and unleash our economy in the face of the huge damage being wrought by the extended Covid lockdown... More>>

ALSO:


Pay Cheque To Pay Cheque: Half A Million New Zealanders Have No Savings
New findings from the Consumer NZ sentiment tracker found that 15% of New Zealanders had no savings, and a further 27% were anxious about their level of savings and would like to have more tucked away... More>>


Government: Mandatory Vaccination For Two Workforces

Large parts of two workforces critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19 will be required to be vaccinated, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Our education and health and disability workforces have done an incredible job throughout this pandemic to keep themselves and people safe,” Chris Hipkins said.... More>>


Green Party: Deeply Concerned Space Launches May Be Breaching Nuclear-free Laws

The Green Party is deeply concerned that space launches by Rocket Lab may be breaching nuclear-free laws, given our long-standing position as a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels