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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Review of RAMSI gets underway in Honiara today by Pacific Islands Forum Taskforce

A two-member Pacific Islands Forum Taskforce will conduct a preliminary review of the Regional Assistance Mission in Solomon Islands (RAMSI) from 24-29 April.

The Taskforce comprises Mr Kaliopate Tavola, former Foreign Minister of Fiji and former New Zealand Diplomat, Mr Neil Walters. They will be accompanied by staff of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.

“The review was a decision of the Forum Leaders at their summit in Nadi, Fiji, last October following a country paper by the Solomon Islands Government. This is the preliminary phase of a two-phased review to ensure the Terms of Reference for the Review is covered adequately,” Mr Peter Forau, Acting Forum Secretary General said.

“The Review will assess the performance of RAMSI since it was invited into Solomon Islands in 2003 and make recommendations on the way forward for the regional intervention,” Mr Forau said.

The Taskforce is scheduled to hold consultations with the Solomon Islands Government, RAMSI, provincial and community leaders, chiefs, church leaders, women and youth representatives, civil society organisations, trade unions, business organizations, development partners as well as other stakeholders during the preliminary review. Members of the public in Solomon Islands are being encouraged to make written submissions to the Taskforce while it is in Honiara from 24 – 29 April.

The first review of RAMSI was carried out in 2005 by a Forum Eminent Persons Group. All 16 member countries of the Pacific Islands Forum contribute to the Mission.

Source: PIFS

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