NEW OUTBREAK OF VIOLENCE IN SOLOMONS

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (January 8, 2001 – Radio Australia)---There has 's been a fresh outbreak of violence in the Solomon Island's capital of Honiara between the Marau Eagle Force and Guadalcanal militants.

Police in Honiara say a Marau man was stabbed by suspected Guadalcanal militants on the eastern outskirts of the capital.

They say that following the stabbing, members of the Marau Eagle Force retaliated by stabbing a Guadalcanal man a short distance from the Police patrol base in the town center.

The condition of the two men is not known.

Meanwhile, police concede that the unresolved Marau issue is affecting the fragile peace still being maintained in Honiara.

Peace talks on the Marau issue resumed last week and were intended to reach a final draft agreement stage, but there has been no official word on the status of the negotiations.

A government official said the Marau issue is hindering the disarmament process between the Malaita Eagle Force and the Isatabu Freedom Movement, who fought an almost two-year ethnic conflict over land rights and jobs.

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

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