21 Jul 2003

Australian PM says Solomons could be a haven for terrorists and drug runners

10:16 am on 21 July 2003

Australian prime minister, John Howard, says there is a risk of Solomon Islands degenerating into a terrorist haven.

Speaking on the eve of the Australian-led intervention force leaving for the Solomons, Mr Howard described the deployment of the force as a very significant change in policy,.

He said if the Solomons becomes a failed state, it would be a potential haven for terrorists, drug runners and money launderers.

That was something, he said, that Australia did not want on its doorstep