AFP here to assist local Police

The first team of AFP deployment at the Henderson Airport this evening. PHOTO SUPPLIED
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THE first Australian Federal Police Officers deployed to assist maintain law and order in Honiara following two days of rioting have arrived at the Henderson Airport, a couple of minutes ago.

The first deployment touched down around 10:40PM with 23 members of the Australian Federal Police’s Specialist Response Group.

The Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison earlier this evening said “Our purpose here is to provide stability and security.

He made the announcement following a meeting of Australia’s National Security Committee of cabinet this afternoon. The meeting was convened after his Solomon Islands counterpart, Manasseh Sogavare urged Australia to help under a security treaty both countries signed in 2017.

According to the Prime Minister Morrison, another 50 AFP officers will be deployed to support critical infrastructure on Friday, as well as 43 Defence Force personnel from Army units based in Townsville.

Mr Morrison said he expected the Australian deployment to last “a matter of weeks”.

“Our purpose here is to provide stability and security to enable the normal constitutional processes, within the Solomon Islands, to be able to deal with the various issues that have arisen,” he said.