17 Jul 2007

Australia reaffirms support for Tonga Government

7:26 pm on 17 July 2007

Australia's Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, has reaffirmed his government's support for the Tongan government.

Mr Downer has met Tonga's Prime Minister, Dr Feleti Sevele, and agreed to a request from him for further financial assistance from Canberra.

A grant of nearly 4.5 million US dollars to the Reconstruction and Recovery Facility for rebuilding after last year's November riots in the capital Nuku'alofa.

Mr Downer also reaffirmed Australia's assistance towards the restructuring and capacity-building of the Tonga Police Force in the joint project with the New Zealand government.

It's Mr Downer's second visit to Tonga and his fourth meeting with Dr Sevele in 18 months.