20 Jun 2002

IPMT says hundreds of guns still unaccounted for in Solomons

5:01 pm on 20 June 2002

The International Peace Monitoring Team, which will complete its pull out of Solomon Islands next week, says hundreds of guns remain in the community.

The IPMT arrived in Solomons in December 2000 to monitor the surrender and help build confidence within the commmunity.

Since then it has collected more than two thousand weapons, mostly home made, but the IPMT leader, John Fennessy, says there are many high powered guns taken from police armouries still unaccounted for.

"But several hundred weapons seem still to be missing or at least unaccounted for in the sense that the police do not have them and the IPMT does not have them"

John Fennessy.

Late last month, after a directive from Deputy Commissioner Wilfred Akao, dozens of guns illegally held by police officers were returned to the main armoury at Rove.

Mr Akao says he believes all guns held by police have now been returned.