Australia deploys soldiers in Solomon Islands after fires and riots

Riots and fires broke out in the Solomon Islands, an archipelago in the Pacific Ocean. The Australian government sent troops to restore order at the archipelago’s request.

Residents of the island of Malaita set fire to a building near parliament in the capital Honiara, shops and a police station. They are demonstrating against Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavary because they feel deprived of his government. They also accuse the government of corruption and are unhappy with Chinese companies that will give jobs in the island group to foreigners, rather than locals.

China in Taiwan

Prime Minister Sugavari’s 2019 decision to sever ties with Taiwan and recognize only China appears to play a role in the conflict. Sugavari said on Friday that foreign interference over his decision to bolster ties with Beijing had fueled anti-government protests, arson and looting, the Associated Press reported.

Beijing views Taiwan as a renegade province and imposes this view on the countries with which it has relations. Fifteen countries still recognize Taiwan as a state with full rights.

Soldiers from Australia in Honiara at the request of the Solomon Islands government. It was dispatched under a security agreement the two countries signed in 2017. “It is not the Australian government’s intention to interfere in the internal affairs of the Solomon Islands. This is a matter for them to resolve,” Australian Prime Minister Morrison said.

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