8 Jul 2005

Forum says RAMSI success hinges on Solomon government support

4:19 pm on 8 July 2005

The long term success of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands, or RAMSI, will be determined by how well the Government assumes the work being done by the intervention force.

That is the view of an Eminent Persons Group which has assessed the work of RAMSI.

The EPG has praised RAMSI's efforts in restoring law and order and has laid out 25 steps for the further development of the country, with much emphasis on the need for the Government to take a greater role.

The Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum, Greg Urwin, who was a member of the EPG, says they saw the danger of RAMSI being seen as a cure-all.

He says this can't be allowed to happen.

"I think we have made it clear that RAMSI's ongoing presence in the Solomons needs to be very much defined by tasks rather than time, but in the end, it will be a finite exercise and its success will be determined by the ability of the Solomon Islands Government to pick up on a lot of the work being done and carry it forward itself - these are national responsibilities."