Australian Defence Force Support to Royal Solomon Islands Police Force
Australian Defence Force Support to Royal Solomon Islands Police Force

Australian Defence Force Support to Royal Solomon Islands Police Force

The Australian Defence Force (ADF) is working with the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) to restore calm after recent civil unrest in Solomon Islands. Around 100 ADF personnel have deployed to support the whole-of-Government response alongside officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers. This follows the Australian Government’s response to a request from the Solomon Islands Government under the 2017 bilateral security treaty to assist with provision of safety and security in Honiara. The Australian team have been joined by Pacific partners from the Republic of Fiji Military Forces and Papua New Guinean Constabulary and Defence Force, and New Zealand Defence Force and Police.

Commander Joint Task Group 637.3 LTCOL Steve Frankel said,“The ADF was proud to support our Pacific Island family. Solomon Islands is part of our Pacific family and is one of our closest neighbours. The ADF is supporting the Royal Solomon Island Police Force alongside Australian Federal Police. The situation in Honiara remains calm following the initial unrest, and the RSIPF has done a great job to restore order.”

Australian Army Lance Corporal Callum Evans from Joint Task Group 637.3, photographs the rove port during a reconnaissance patrol in the Solomon Islands on 28 November 2021. (Photo by CPL Brandon Grey/Australian Government Department of Defence)

As part of the ADF’s contribution:
personnel are working alongside AFP and RSIPF to support operations;
an Air Force team is providing airfield support operations;
HMAS Armidale is assisting the RSIPF with maritime security; and
Air Force is conducting regular sustainment flights.

The ADF contingent is from the Deployable Joint Force Headquarters, Army’s 3rd, 6th and 17th Brigades, Royal Australian Air Force No. 4 Squadron and Royal Australian Navy’s HMAS Armidale. The first ADF personnel arrived in Honiara on a RAAF Globemaster on November 26. The ADF’s tasks are tailored to the needs of the Solomon Islands Government supporting the AFP and DFAT, and are in keeping with our enduring security partnership. ADF, AFP and DFAT personnel are fully vaccinated and are adhering to strict COVID-safe protocols.

Commander of Joint Task Group 637.3, Lieutenant Colonel Steve Frankel (left), and Private Thomas Rixon, watch the Armidale Class Patrol Boat, HMAS Armidale, sail into the Port of Honiara, Solomon Island on 01 December 2021.(Photo by CPL Brandon Grey/Australian Government Department of Defence)