20 Oct 2009

New book in Solomons details people's experiences during the ethnic tension

4:41 pm on 20 October 2009

An editor of a new book about the ethnic tensions in Solomon Islands says it details people's personal struggles and triumphs.

The book, detailing how the Church of Melanesia responded to the people of Solomon Islands during the tensions, was launched last week.

The civil unrest began in late 1998 when Guadalcanal militants began forcing Malaitan settlers off the island.

Called Mission in the Midst of Conflict: Stories from the Solomon Islands, the book was co-edited by Father Charles Brown Beu, who says it is a collection of more than 20 people's experiences.

"It's basically about how the church organisation was able to contribute in helping the victims by supplying food and transporting them to Malaita, the people of Malaita. And the other interesting thing that is reflected in the book is that while the men were fighting, the women from Guadalcanal and Malaita were helping each other secretly. And to me that was very important."

Father Charles says a cross section of people from Guadalcanal and Malaita, including church workers contributed to the book.