End of Assistance Mission marked in Honiara

This article has photo gallery Published on Department of Defence (author), LS Mark Eaton (photographer)

Topic(s): Operations, Ships, Boats and Submarines

A bird's eye view of Royal Australian Navy's HMAS Diamantina in the Solomon Islands. (photo: Unknown)
A bird's eye view of Royal Australian Navy's HMAS Diamantina in the Solomon Islands.

The Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands came to a close on 30 June after nearly 14 years of assistance provided to the Solomon Islands Government.
Defence Minister Marise Payne said the Australian Defence Force’s contribution to the mission was significant as part of the wider Australian effort.
“The outstanding success of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands reflects the enduring commitment of Australia and its regional partners in working together to assist the people of the Solomon Islands,” Senator Payne said.
“As an Australian-led mission, it included assistance from 15 nations and supported the rebuilding of peace and stability in the Solomon Islands.
“The Defence contribution to the Assistance Mission under Operation ANODE has been significant, with more than 7,000 Defence members and Defence civilians deployed to the Solomon Islands, with rotations of Defence Force personnel from Fiji, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Tonga.”
After a successful 10-year Australian Defence Force commitment, the Assistance Mission transitioned to a policing-only mission in July 2013.
The Solomon Islands Government hosted end-of-mission and farewell activities in Honiara, culminating in a closing ceremony attended by Vice Chief of the Defence Force Vice Admiral Ray Griggs.
Senator Payne said Australia would continue to support the Solomon Islands in policing and governance.
“This support complements the Defence Cooperation Program, which provides focused support in maritime security, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, capacity building and explosive ordnance disposal,” she said.
“The Assistance Mission is widely recognised as a very successful demonstration of regional stabilisation, and an excellent example of Pacific cooperation.”