19 May 2014

Victims' group in Solomon Islands distances itself from rioting claims

10:20 am on 19 May 2014

A group for victims of the recent flooding disaster in Solomon Islands' Guadalcanal province have distanced themselves from claims that victims were behind rioting and looting in east Honiara.

The rioting on Friday and Saturday nights left a shopping centre extensively damaged.

Ground reports say some local people are frustrated at the slow delivery of relief assistance following last month's flooding disaster.

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Photo: RNZ

However, Redley Raramo, the President of a national advocacy organisation, the Forum Solomon Islands International, says opportunists appear to have been involved in the trouble.

"It seems that it's not the victims alone. This was confirmed last night by the committee responsible for the victims, saying they were not part of this looting and this organised sort of thing."

Redley Raramo.

Our correspondent in Solomon Islands, Dorothy Wickham, says the rioting was relatively minor compared with other recent incidents in the country.

She says police acted quickly to contain the rioters.

"It's only one block of buildings even though there's about five businesses operating in the one block. It's on a smaller scale. I think police were very fast in containing them in that little corner."

Dorothy Wickham.