8 Nov 2005

Regional counter-terrorism exercise underway in Fiji

4:14 pm on 8 November 2005

A two day counter-terrorism exercise is underway in Fiji at the Forum Secretariat with representatives from 16 member countries and regional law enforcement agencies attending.

The New Zealand prime minister, Helen Clark, says this is the first time the exercise is being held on a region wide basis.

And, she says it will explore its ability to plan for, and respond to, a hypothetical terrorist incident.

The executive director of the secretariat of the Pacific Islands Chiefs of Police, Superintendent Cam Ronald, says those attending "Exercise Ready Pasifika" will be able to test how well their security systems work internally and regionally.

"This is an exercise where a set of scenarios will be presented to each of the countries, the 16 countries that are present, and as they work through and problem solve it, further pieces of the puzzle will be added to that exercise to build up the picture."

Superintendent Ronald says it's likely that this will lead to an exercise in which police and others are actually deployed