Edward Acton Cavanough
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Henderson Concession
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On 28 June 2022, Prime Minister Sogavare took to the podium in his office. In just three days’ time, he announced that Solomon Islands’ border would be normalised. The austere immigration and customs infrastructure was still in place, despite the various new processes necessitated by Covid-19. The dilapidated, potholed road linking Henderson Airport to the capital remained unimproved. M4D’s desire to resolve the issues facing their province through formal dialogue between the Sogavare government and the Malaitan provincial government was a significant change in approach. The closest comparable case to Malaita’s is in the far west of the Solomon Archipelago, where Papua New Guinea’s Autonomous Region of Bougainville successfully voted for independence in 2019. The referendum commenced a period of negotiations between Bougainville and Papua New Guinea aimed at creating a timetable for independence.

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