23 May 2002

Gun surrender programme in Solomons gathers speed

2:50 am on 23 May 2002

Solomon Islands Peace Monitoring Council says that 131 weapons have now been surrendered since it began a campaign a month ago to encourage former militants to hand in their guns.

An amnesty for the surrender of weapons and stolen property ends in a week.

The PMC says the International Peace Monitoring Team last week recovered 35 weapons from East Guadalcanal, including one army gun and several shot guns.

The Deputy Chairman, Sir Peter Kenilorea, says people are now surrendering guns at a faster rate than the country has seen for some months.

Meanwhile the IPMT is winding down its operations with the bulk of the group due to leave Solomon Islands in four weeks time.