Australia invests $17m and deploys security forces to Pacific Games in Solomon Islands
Australia is extending its support to the Solomon Islands in ensuring the safe and successful hosting of the 2023 Pacific Games through the $17 million Pacific Games Partnership and additional personnel deployments, as requested by the Solomon Islands Government.
Scheduled to take place in Honiara from November 19 to December 2, the 2023 Pacific Games is a major regional event, uniting approximately 5,000 athletes, officials and support staff from 24 Pacific teams.
Australia is reinforcing its commitment by deploying around 100 additional Australian Federal Police (AFP) personnel, joining over 50 colleagues already stationed in the Solomon Islands as part of the Solomons International Assistance Force (SIAF). Additionally, the Australian Defence Force (ADF) will contribute 350 personnel to support the SIAF in various capacities such as security, logistics, and other essential roles.
Working under the leadership of the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) alongside partners from Papua New Guinea, Fiji and New Zealand, the AFP and ADF personnel aim to contribute to a safe and secure environment for the event.
Australia’s Pacific Games Partnership will leave a lasting impact in the Solomon Islands, with almost $17 million in direct support, including upgrades to seven schools and strengthened ties with Australian sporting institutions.
Expressing a long-term commitment to sports development in the Pacific, Australia is proud to assist Pacific athletes and sporting institutions from across the region. The Australian contingent for the 2023 Pacific Games comprises a 75-strong team participating in various events, including athletics, archery, boxing and weightlifting. Some of these competitions serve as qualifying events for the Paris Olympics in certain sports.
“Australia and Solomon Islands have a deep and enduring history, and we’re proud to continue working together under our Bilateral Security Treaty, and with Pacific partners, to support the hosting of a safe and secure Pacific Games,” said Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon Richard Marles MP.
“The additional AFP and ADF deployment builds our longstanding security partnerships across the Pacific.”
Acting Attorney-General, the Hon Michelle Rowland MP, noted the AFP’s collaboration with the RSIPF to enhance capabilities ahead of the Pacific Games, emphasising the commitment to a safe and successful event.
“We are proud to have the AFP supporting this significant event, standing side-by-side with not only the RSIPF, but police counterparts from other Pacific countries including Papua New Guinea,” she stated.
The Games’ theme of ‘Challenge, Celebrate, Unite’ is aimed at bringing together athletes and communities in celebration of the Pacific’s sporting talent.
“The Pacific Games will be a brilliant exhibition of athleticism, inclusion and competition and provide another example of how our journey to the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games is about more than just Australia,” added Minister for Sport, the Hon Anika Wells MP.
“We wish all athletes and the organisers a successful Pacific Games.”