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Friday, August 18, 2006

New Zealand says Taiwan should stop its "cheque book diplomacy" in Solomon Islands

New Zealand’s Foreign Minister, Winston Peters says Taiwan should stop interfering in Solomon Islands politics.

Radio New Zealand International reports that Mr Peters told a meeting of Commonwealth parliamentarians in Wellington that Taiwan played a key role in the troubles in Solomon Islands.

He said Taiwan’s involvement in the recent blow-up in the Solomon Islands is irrefutable and he thinks they were engaged in cheque book diplomacy and the outcome was disastrous.

Mr Peters said he thinks New Zealand is entitled to say that since they are involved alongside Australia trying to repair the situation.

He said New Zealand will actively seek to discourage ‘cheque book diplomacy.'

Mr Peter also said this includes off-budget aid and aid with poor accountability structures, gifts, and other practices that encourage corruption and poor governance.

He said those who seek to manage their relations with the region in this way not only do great harm, but also run significant risks to their own international reputation.

Source: SIBC

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