The United Nations Secretary General António Guterres has expressed support for Solomon Island’s increased efforts in its transition to sustaining peace, especially now with the imminent departure of RAMSI at the end of this month.
Mr Guterres and Prime Minister Sogavare met at the United Nations Headquarters, New York, last Wednesday, 7th June, after the Special Session of the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) on Solomon Islands post-conflict transition.
Prime Minister Sogavare strongly impressed upon the UN Secretary-General for the current Peace Building Fund Programme in Solomon Islands to continue after its first phase as well as assistance to address customary land reform and the fight against corruption.
Prime Minister Sogavare confirmed to Mr Guterres that access to land for development with fair returns to landowners and the problem of corruption are two significant impediments to building lasting peace.
Secretary General Guterres further agreed with Prime Minister Sogavare that climate change is an impediment to attaining lasting peace in small island countries like Solomon Islands.
Both leaders also agreed on the importance of preservation and sustainable measures for the Ocean because of Pacific Island Countries reliance on the Ocean as a source of revenue, protein and food security.
In support of Prime Minister Sogavare, the UN Secretary General affirmed his wish for the UN and Pacific Island Countries to continuously express strong solidarity on critical issues such as climate change and the conservation and sustainable use of the oceans than ever before.
Mr Gueterres confirmed to Prime Minister Sogavare that the significant presence of small Pacific Island States at this year’s UN Summit on Oceans was a very important expression on an issue so crucial to them. The Ocean summit was held on the same week Prime Minister Sogavare was in New York for the PBC.