11 Jul 2007

Australian foreign minister condemns Moti appointment

9:52 am on 11 July 2007

The Australian Foreign Minister , Alexander Downer, says Australia has strong objections to the swearing in of Julian Moti, as Solomon Islands Attorney-General and calls on the Solomon Islands Government to reverse the appointment

Mr Moti was sworn in as Attorney General at a ceremony in Honiara yesterday.

Mr Downer says Julian Moti is a person who is wanted by the Australian Federal Police in order to face charges of child sex tourism.

Alexander Downer says he'll continue to demand Mr Moti be brought to justice.

"These are very serious charges that Mr Moti faces. To appoint somebody who is facing child sex charges as the first law officer of the nation reflects very very poorly on the Prime Minister of Solomon Islands."

Mr Downer says Australia lodged a full formal extradition request with the Solomon Islands Government, seeking the return to Australia of Mr Moti, on 15 December 2006.

He says Australia will continue to seek Mr Moti's extradition