30 Oct 2003

Forum Secretary-General to visit Honiara

11:16 am on 30 October 2003

The Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, Noel Levi, is to discuss areas for future regional assistance to Solomon Islands when he visits Honiara this week.

Mr Levi is due to meet the Solomons prime minister, Sir Allan Kemakeza, and senior officials including those involved in the Regional Assitance Mission.

Mr Levi has welcomed the recent announcment by Australia and New Zealand that they were scaling down their military presence in the Solomons.

He says it is a positive sign and shows how quickly the situation has improved on the ground.

Mr Levi says despite considerable challenges that remain, the government and people of Solomon Islands can be assured of support from their many friends, through RAMSI and other international efforts.

Mr Levi's visit will also help with preparations for a conference next month between the Solomon Island government and aid donors.