11 Aug 2015

Solomons police to train as UN peacekeepers

2:22 pm on 11 August 2015

Solomon Islands police could be sent on their first peace keeping duties with the United Nations early next year.

The UN is increasingly turning to the Melanesian countries to help maintain peace around the world, with police from Vanuatu and police and soldiers from Fiji involved, while Papua New Guinea is also preparing personnel.

And by early next year Solomons' officers expect to be involved.

Cutting of the ribbon to officially open the new Auki Police station (From left to right) Commissioner of RSIPF, Frank Prendergast; Ministry of Police, Hon. Peter Shanel Agovaka; RAMSI Special Coordinator, Justine Braithwaite; and Deputy Premier of Malaita Province, Hon. Alick Maeaba.

Solomon Islands Police Commissioner Frank Prendergast. Photo: RAMSI

The Royal Solomon Islands Police Force commander, Frank Prendergast, says the capacity building since the years of civil unrest have got his staff to a stage where they are ready to undertake peace keeping work if required.

"We are identifying a number of officers to go through pre-deployment training, which will be supplied by the Australian Federal Police, and that will mean that those officers are ready to deploy to UN missions, if and when the Solomon Islands Government agrees with the UN about those deployments."