10 Nov 2014

Australian riot police in Solomons for elections

2:37 pm on 10 November 2014

A contingent of Australian riot police is among more than 90 officers being flown to Solomon Islands ahead of next week's elections.

The additional support will see 54 officers from Australia, 32 from New Zealand and about 10 officers from the Cook Islands, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Tonga and Tuvalu.

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Photo: RNZI Koroi Hawkins

RAMSI's Special Coordinator Justine Braithwaite says the increase in personnel is only a contingency measure while the local police force is in full control of policing the elections.

" We anticipate that the elections will be conducted peacefully, if there are any isolated security incidents, the RSIPF is very well prepared and well positioned to manage those, but the incoming specialists will involve a very strong tactical police contingent. In the event there are any issues we will be able to support the RSIPF in managing those."

It is understood that the Australian contingent arrives into Honiara this afternoon, New Zealand officers are due tomorrow while the Pacific Island contingent is already on the ground.

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