Posted on 19 July 2023
Last week, Manasseh Sogavare, Solomon Islands Prime Minister, visited Beiing to sign nine agreements – one of widespread regional concern being the Police Cooperation Implementation Plan through which China will support and help strengthen Solomon Island policing.
The US, NZ, Australia and the Solomon Islands opposition, have all called for the details of the deal to be published. Penny Wong, Australian Foreign Minister, has stated that “the security of the Pacific is something that we all have an interest in, so we urge there to be transparency."
Matthew Wale, Solomon Islands opposition leader, has expressed his party's concern, saying that while “democracies must uphold human rights and due process” in their policing, communist countries do not. He adds “our fear is that in the near future China's interest will clash with U.S. influence and strategic interests in the region and we are right in the middle of it all."