10 Jun 2002

Police in Solomon islands dismiss local speculation over foreign leadership of force

8:45 am on 10 June 2002

The police in Solomon islands have moved to dismiss local speculation that New Zealand or Australian officers might start taking a leading role in the force.

Over the weekend, the New Zealand Foreign Affairs Minister, Phil Goff, said the Government was considering sending police officers to Solomon Islands to work alongside local police.

The Commissioner of Police in the Solomons, Morton Siriheti, said his discussions with New Zealand and Australia had centred on overseas officers providing advice and support not taking over responsibility for policing.

Mr Siriheti told the Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation that any other local interpretation was wrong and mischievous.