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Last Updated: Friday, 14 July 2006, 03:57 GMT 04:57 UK
Inquiry to probe Solomons riots
Manasseh Sogavare
Manasseh Sogavare took over from Synder Rini
The Solomon Islands has set up a commission to investigate the riots which erupted in the capital in April.

"I appeal to everyone to assist in unravelling the truth," said Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare.

Thousands of rioters burned down buildings in Honiara's Chinese district, angered by the election of Snyder Rini as prime minister.

The protesters alleged that either China or Taiwan had paid lawmakers to vote for him.

Hundreds of ethnic Chinese fled the Solomons in the wake of the violence.

Mr Rini resigned eight days later, when several members of his government - including his successor Mr Sogavare - defected to the opposition.

Wide-ranging task

Mr Sogavare said the four-member inquiry commission would be chaired by retired Australian Federal Court judge Marcus Einfield.

The commission is due to start work before the end of July, and complete its task within six months.

It will investigate allegations against several prominent lawmakers - including Dausebea and Nelson Ne, both of whom are already in police custody.

It will also look at the actions of local police and foreign security forces during the riots.

Several hundred foreign troops from around the region are stationed in the Solomons, mostly from Australia. They are part of an assistance mission requested by the Honiara government in 2003.

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