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SYDNEY, Australia (ABC News Online, June 19) - New Zealand
Foreign Affairs Minister Phil Goff has asked participants at the Association of
South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum to help out with Solomon
Islands' security problems.

Goff told the meeting in Cambodia that Solomon Islands'
situation is getting out of control and will seriously affect security in the
Asia-Pacific region if nothing is done.

He said the situation has reached crisis point.

Goff said inability to prevent intimidation, extortion and
violence has not only removed the rule of law there but has also ruined Solomon
Islands' economy and removed its ability to provide its own social services.

He said the situation in the Solomon's is made worse by the
ready availability of weapons, which are now controlled by criminal groups

June 20, 2003

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