Australia commits support to enhance security arrangements for the 2023 Pacific Games and the 2024 National General Elections, the Australian High Commissioner to Solomon Islands, His Excellency Rod Hilton confirms to Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare MP.
The provision is in response to a formal government request dated 4th August to Prime Minister Hon. Anthony Albanese seeking further support to enhance security arrangements for the 2023 Pacific Games and the extension of the Solomon Islands International Assistance Force, SIAF deployment mechanism to 30th June 2024 to support security arrangements for the 2024 National General Elections.
Conveying the Australian Prime Minister Hon. Albanese’s response, H.E Hilton said as Solomon Islands primary security partner, Australia is pleased to agree to the request to enhance security arrangements in the lead up to and during the Pacific Games, including an increase of SIAF personnel under the ‘Agreement Between the Government of Australia and the Government of Solomon Islands Concerning the Basis for Deployment of Police, Armed Forces and Other Personnel to Solomon Islands’ (the Bilateral Security Treaty).
He further stated, Australia is pleased to extend the SIAF deployment mechanism under the Bilateral Security Treaty to 30th June 2024, to support security arrangements in the lead up to, during and immediately after the 2024 National General Election.
Australia is also ready to support a phased increase in Papua New Guinea security forces in the period aforementioned, he adds.
Solomon Islands and Australia’s partnership is founded on trust, respect and shared values, stated H.E Hilton.
Appreciating Australia’s favorable response to Solomon Islands request, Prime Minister Sogavare said, the security support needed for both events is huge and Australia’s affirmative response will definitely fill security gaps leading up to, during and after the two important event.
The Prime Minister stated, Solomon Islands is thankful to Australia for the increased security support extended to June 2024.
PM Sogavare encouraged officials of both countries to continue discussions on a comprehensive security partnership beyond June 2024. Adding, any undertakings on the Federal constitution will require a well-planned Security roadmap.
Australia has created 12,759 jobs for Solomon Islanders since 2021. Further, it spent 5 Million dollars on Infrastructure (including Defence) across Solomon Islands since 2019.
These Infrastructure are in the Justice, Water and Sanitation, Education, Health, Climate and Disaster Resilience, Communication and connectivity, maritime, Infrastructure, AFP/Defence, Transport and Sports sectors.
-PM PRESS SEC