Gov’t Rejects Claims PM Snub US at 80th Anniversary
The Government has rejected newspaper claims that Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare snubbed the visiting US delegation and other allies at a dawn service commemorating the 80th Anniversary of World War Two on Sunday 7 August in Honiara.
A Government statement today clarified that the Solomon Islands Government was well represented at all events marking the anniversary at Ministerial levels as well as during commemoration events at various locations in and around Honiara.
The statement said the newspaper claims were misleading and lacks understanding of relevant protocols applied and exercised during the events.
Delegations from the United States of America, Japan, Australia and New Zealand celebrated the 80th Anniversary in Solomon Islands from 6-8 August 2022. Visiting delegations were led at various levels in the case of the United States at official level. Japan was represented by the State Minister of Defence. New Zealand and Australia were represented at Ministerial levels.
The purpose was to celebrate Peace following events of World War II and honoring the memory of those that served in Solomon Islands during World War II and those that paid the ultimate sacrifice in the country.
The three days’ events which ran throughout the weekend saw the presence of high level military personnel at all events. The Solomon Islands Government and people at the events were represented at Ministerial levels.
The Prime Minister is the Head of Government and leads a Cabinet, all whom represents the Government and people of Solomon Islands. Given the nature of the visit and the rich and deep military presence, the Minister of Police and National Security and Correctional Services led and represented the government supported by other Cabinet Ministers. Similarly, the Minister of Tourism and Culture also hosted an event at Bloody Ridge today.
All diplomatic Missions were informed of the level of Solomon Islands representation ahead of the programme both during the planning stage and formally at the events proper.
Standard protocol needs to be respected, the Government has full trust and support of all Ministerial engagement in the country.
“Should a Head of Government attend the event, the Prime Minister’s presence would be required. Efforts are being made to ensure Protocol is consistently applied to all future events that require the Prime Minister’s presence,” the statement said.
At the bilateral level, the Prime Minister and his Foreign Minister met with visiting delegations.
The Government of Solomon Islands once again acknowledged and appreciated the presence of the United States, Japan, Australia and New Zealand and regrets misreporting by the Solomon Star and Island Sun newspapers.