31 Jul 2007

Solomon Islands National Council of Women condemns logging incident

7:08 am on 31 July 2007

The Solomon Islands National Council of Women is strongly condemning an incident in which two women were injured following a clash with security company guards employed by a logging company.

Six women were protesting against a logging operation on Vella Lavella in Western Province and one was taken to hospital with a knife wound while another has a suspected fractured bone after a confrontation with Omex Logging company security staff.

The president of the National Council of Women, Hilda Kari, says it is time for the government to look again at the issues involved in the forestry industry.

She says, however, that it relies so much on the revenues from logging that it's very hard to get through to them about the problems.

But, Mrs Kari says the government needs to act now.

"They should reconsider looking at all these development areas in the logging industry; what kind of people are in the field, whether or not they should be bringing foreigners to be in the employment sector in this area or using Solomon Islanders in this labour force, rather than bringing these people who are causing these problems."

Mrs Kari is also condemning the sexual exploitation of children which is reported to be occurring near some logging camps.