The Solomon Islands recently denies entry to a U.S. Coast Guard cutter for a scheduled port call, sounding further alarms to the country defecting to China and cutting ties with the United States.
Stars and Stripes reports:
The USCG cutter Oliver Henry, which is homebased in Guam, was scheduled for a routine logistics port call on Guadalcanal, Lt. Kristin Kam, a spokeswoman for the 14th Coast Guard District in Honolulu, said in an email Thursday.
“The Government of the Solomon Islands did not respond to the U.S. Government’s request for diplomatic clearance for the vessel to refuel and provision in Honiara,” Kam said. “Accordingly, CGC Oliver Henry diverted to Papua New Guinea to refuel and provision.”
The Oliver Henry arrived on Tuesday in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, for a port visit, according to a Coast Guard news release that day. The visit followed the cutter’s patrol in “parts of the Coral Sea and the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea Exclusive Economic Zones,” the release said.
The Coast Guard declined to disclose the date the cutter had intended to make the Guadalcanal port call, citing operational security concerns.
Kam said, “The U.S. Department of State is in contact with the Government of the Solomon Islands and expect all future clearances will be provided to U.S. ships.”