18 Sep 2007

Solomons Prime Minister reiterates need for review of RAMSI

10:07 am on 18 September 2007

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare says a review of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands is needed to protect the laws of Solomon Islands from being disregard by foreign interests.

Mr Sogavare said the heavy handed military approach undertaken by RAMSI to restore law and order in the country after years of social unrest was relevant only to the situation before 2003.

Mr Sogavare says this is the reason for the proposed review passed by parliament recently.

Mr Sogavare stressed that his government was not anti-RAMSI as suggested by both the international and local media.

"What the government is concerned about, he said, is the respect for our laws, systems and procedures, which have been grossly undermined, ."

Meanwhile, provincial premiers last week called for a reduction of RAMSI police in provinces with very low crime rates.

The premiers suggested that money spent on those officers should be redirected to the development needs of the provinces and that officers posted to these areas be re-deployed to other provinces which are yet to fully recover in terms of security.