US embassy refutes ‘fantasy’ media report of backing assassination plot on PM Sogavare


The United States embassy has refuted Solomon Star’s front-page story claiming the US was behind an assassination plot on Prime Minister Sogavare.

Spokesman for the embassy, Damian Wampler describes the report as ‘outrageous’ and an effort ‘to undermine and damage US-Solomon Islands relations’.

The office of the prime minister and cabinet (OPMC) is expected to make a statement on this matter today.

Solomon Star on Saturday (March 4) published a front-pager titled ‘TOP SECRET OUT’ alleging US of having supported a move to oust the DCGA government and assassinate PM Manasseh Sogavare.

The article references unnamed sources for the allegations, and withheld names.

Police (RSIPF) has chosen to remain silent on this matter. “Police are unable to respond to such an issue,” Police Media told the paper this week.

Meanwhile, members of public have taken to social media questioning the credibility of the article and its author, a veteran journalist. One prominent academic has labelled the article ‘a story on unfounded rumours’.

The media association of Solomon Islands (MASI) has responded calling on the Solomon Star to be responsible in its news reporting. MASI describes the article as having ‘no substantial evidence’ and ‘based on mere hearsay’.

Embassy spokesman Mr Wampler responding to Island Sun enquiry earlier this week said:

“The United States condemns the outrageous claims made in the Solomon Star newspaper that the United States is involved in an assassination plot against Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare.

“Efforts to undermine and damage US-Solomon Islands relations will not succeed.

“The story is a wild fantasy that has no truth or merit whatsoever. Any efforts to undermine advancing US-Solomon Islands relations, to be clear, will only end in failure.

“We continue to call on all parties in Solomon Islands to engage in constructive, inclusive dialogue to seek a peaceful resolution to their differences and secure a prosperous future for the country.

“The opening of the US Embassy in Honiara this year is an expansion of our engagement with the Solomon Islands, further solidifying the US commitment to our relationship and to the people of the Solomon Islands.

“The United States has a long history of engagement in Solomon Islands. Examples include the commencement of the U.S. government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC)’s work with the Government of Solomon Islands through a four-year $20 million MCC Threshold Program; sharing 188,370 COVID-19 vaccine doses and other assistance to Solomon Islands to combat the pandemic; support through USAID’s SCALE program; and the mitigation of unexploded ordnance. 

“Solomon Islanders, along with people from across the region, also actively participate in the State Department’s Young Pacific Leaders Program and many other exchange programs.

“Our relationship with the Solomon Islands has never been stronger.

“We look forward to accelerating our collaboration and building our ties together to facilitate a free, open, and prosperous Indo-Pacific region.”

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