Thursday, 25 March 2010 9:52 AM

Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeo Arrives in Solomon Islands

The Government and people of Solomon Islands welcomed Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeo who arrived in Honiara yesterday afternoon amidst tight security.

The Taiwanese President arrived in Honiara with a 90 strong delegation, including 39 Taiwanese journalists.

Prime Minister Dr Derek Sikua and other senior leaders met President Ma on arrival at Henderson International Airport.

Later in the afternoon, President Ma paid a courtesy call on the Governor General, Sir Frank Kabui at Government House.

Following the talks, Ma attended a cultural and military display by ROC naval officers and cadets of Taiwan's national navy academy at a soccer stadium.

The stadium was packed with Solomon Islanders who turned out to see traditional Chinese lion and dragon dances, marching band performances, and a special form of boxing called Juchuan that was developed by the Taiwan military.

President Ma will today have a private audience and a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Dr Derek Sikua. President Ma will also confer an Award to Dr. Sikua.

After engagements with the Prime Minister, President Ma will Address the National Parliament of Solomon Islands and present a Plaque in honor of the Taiwanese-funded extension of the National Parliament Complex Project.

President Ma will also visit a number of Taiwanese aid assistance around Honiara, this includes the National referral Hospital to witness the handing over of medical equipment and medicines worth more than US$1.5 million dollars by the visiting Taiwanese delegation from Kaohsiung Medical University Memorial Hospital of Taipei.

President Ma and his delegation will leave the Solomon Islands tomorrow.


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By GEOFFREY MAURIASI USP, Lacuala Campus, Fiji
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