Bishop releases Truth and Reconciliation report

The Editor of the Solomon Islands Truth and Reconciliation Report, Doctor Terry M. Brown, a former bishop of the Anglican Church of Melanesia, has unofficially released a digital copy of the report online.

The Report contains the testimony of many of those affected by the five years of violence, the killings and the human rights abuses, as well as a number of recommendations to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

Brown released all five volumes saying he was not confident the Government – who received it last February – would make it public.

“Having had such a long relationship with the Solomon Islands and knowing the situation and having in a sense been a part of it, I decided it’s time to just let the report hit the general public.”

The Prime Minister Gordon Darcy Lilo says Brown has acted “unlawfully”.

Expressing his disappointment from Bangkok where here is attending the 69th Session of the Economic Commission of the Asia and Pacific (ESCAP), Mr Lilo said:

“I don’t expect such an action to come from a person of Bishop Brown’s caliber.”

“The bishop has broken all the confidentialities accorded to him by responsible authorities including the Solomon Islands Government.

“Also, in this case he has no right to publish the report as it is the property of the Government,” Mr Lilo said.

When asked  by Annell Husband, on Radio New Zealand, about the legality of his action Brown relied: “I did sign a contract as an editor and the report isn’t my property to release. It’s within the prime minister’s jurisdiction to release it, so who knows? It would take a lawyer to say. But I think that you possibly could say that I’ve released a confidential document that shouldn’t have been released. So there is a legal question there, I admit.”

The Solomon Islands Attorney General has also described the decision as totally irresponsible.

The Report contains the testimony of many of those affected by the five years of violence, the killings and the human rights abuses, as well as a number of recommendations to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

Bishop Brown has returned to Canada after working in the Solomons for 17 years

 Source

News category: Asia Pacific.

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