West Midlands MEP John Corrie
had to flee the Solomon Islands in a barrage of bullets following a
He has described how the small
plane chartered by him and fellow MEP Glenys Kinnock was shot at as it
tried to taxi down the runway.
Mr Corrie and Mrs Kinnock were
in the former British protectorate in attempt to mediate between two
rival rebel factions.
They were stranded when the
airport was closed as it became the centre of a gun battle between
Malaita Eagle Force, which mounted the coup, and the Isatabu Freedom
Eventually the pair were able
to charter an aircraft, but it had to stop on the runway after being
No-one was injured and the
MEPs made it to safety in Papua New Guinea.
Mr Corrie told the BBC Today
"We had a very exciting
"We managed to charter
a small plane. When we taxied down the runway there was a tremendous
fusillade of shots at us.
"A small part of the
aircraft stopped functioning and we had to go back into the
"But the second time
there were no problems. We took off and have safely arrived in Papua
New Guinea. Everybody is fine."
"It was rather an
unpleasant sight to see democracy marching between the rifle.”