Solomon Islands' pro-China party fails to win majority

Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare, whose government deepened ties with China, won the parliamentary elections in the island nation but failed to secure a majority.

Sogavare's Ownership, Unity and Responsibility Party (OUR) won 15 of the 50 parliamentary seats, official broadcaster SIBC reported on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the opposition Coalition for Accountability Reform and Empowerment (CARE), led by Matthew Wade, won 13 seats, while the rest of the votes were distributed among other minor and independent candidates.

The parliament of the island nation will have eight women, according to the Electoral Commission.

Sogavare, who in 2019 ended 36 years of bilateral relations with Taiwan in favour of China, will have to negotiate with other minor parties and independent candidates to be re-elected.

The polls come amid strategic competition between the United States and China in the Pacific region, which gained prominence when the Sogavare administration signed a security pact with Beijing in 2022.