Solomon Islands police arrest 217 riot suspects, but no ‘instigators’ so far

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SI Police Commissioner Mostyn Managa
Police Commissioner Mostyn Managau ... an appeal to the public for help with evidence. Image: SBM Online

By Robert Iroga in Honiara

Solomon Islands police have arrested 217 suspects connected to the three days of rioting and looting in the capital Honiara last week, but no alleged instigators so far.

Thirty three of the arrested people were juveniles — those under 18.

Police Commissioner Mostyn Managau appealed to members of the public to come forward and support police with evidence.

The riots and looting started on November 24 when a crowd of demonstrators broke into the Parliament grounds. They were then forced out from the Parliament area.

Their retreat into the city sparked three days of riots and looting that saw Chinatown razed, and several other properties in the eastern city set on fire, police stations attacked — one set ablaze, and Honiara High School torched to the ground.

The riots were subdued with the arrival of an international force led by Australia, PNG and Fiji with reinforcements from New Zealand arriving yesterday and over the weekend.

Meanwhile, Commissioner Mangau said there were two ongoing investigations — one into the looting and rioting, while the other probes the alleged perpetrators.

So far there have still been no arrests of key players allegedly behind the riot.

Robert Iroga is editor of SBM Online. Republished with permission.

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