The Australian prime minister, John Howard, arrives in Fiji this afternoon
for the Pacific Islands Forum summit as a row with Solomon Islands
The Solomon Islands prime minister, Manasseh Sogavare, has described a
police raid on his office in Honiara as very provocative and totally
The raid has led to moves to sack the country's Australian police
commissioner, Shane Castles, and for calls to change the Australian
dominated Regional Assistance Mission, RAMSI.
Mr Sogavare would not comment on the outcome of talks that were held with
the prime ministers of Fiji, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea but a statement
from the Melanesian Spearhead group is expected shortly.
The Solomon Islands Foreign Minister, Patteson Oti, says they are calling on
Mr Qarase, as chairman of the Forum, to speak out.
The Forum is responsible for RAMSI which operates as a regional initiative.
Mr Oti says Australia cannot dictate to the region about RAMSI and it needs
The Small Islands summit begins today but it is likely to be
overshadowed by the row between Solomon Islands and Australia.