CEASEFIRE IN SOLOMON ISLANDS LOOKING LESS LIKELY

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HONIARA, Solomon Islands (July 25, 2000 – Radio Australia)---A cease-fire in the Solomon Islands’ ethnic conflict between the Guadalcanal Isatabu Freedom Movement and the Malaita Eagle Force looks less likely following yet another postponement of negotiations.

Radio Australia correspondent Richard Dinnen reports that some Guadalcanal leaders again failed to attend a meeting aboard the Australian naval ship, Tobruk.

"Officially it was bad weather that prevented Isatabu leaders Harold Keke, George Grey and Joe Sangu reaching the Tobruk.

"Guadalcanal Premier Ezekiel Alebua also stayed away, due to illness.

"The rest of the Isatabu leaders attended, and some discussions on a proposed cease-fire took place. But without all leaders present, no decisive progress can be made.

"Isatabu spokesman Henry Tobani told the meeting that efforts will be made to locate the missing leaders and bring them to the next scheduled session on Thursday. But it seems the three don't want to be found.

"Richard Dinnen, Radio Australia, Honiara."

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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