14 Jun 2004

Solomons Minister demands apology from RAMSI over false rape allegation

8:14 pm on 14 June 2004

The Solomon Islands Police Minister wants an apology from the Regional Assistance Mission over the alleged abduction and rape of one of their female military staff members.

Michael Maina says the woman's false allegations sparked negative publicity for the country and the exhaustive investigation that followed was a waste of police time.

Mr Maina says he believes the woman was court-martialled on her return to Australia and dismissed from the military.

But he says that's not enough, he will demand an apology from the leader of RAMSI, Nick Warner.

"The reason why I want an apology is because the way it was orchestrated from day one was there was a rape and the rape was committed by a Solomon Islander, that was the perception that was driven."

Mr Warner is refusing to comment on the matter and Australian defence department officials in Canberra have also declined to comment.

A joint investigation into the incident by the Solomon Islands police and the RAMSI police contingent found no evidence of rape or abduction.

During the investigation there were significant inconsistencies in the version of events outlined by the complainant.