TV1 News 6pm Headlines (First Segment)
Solomon’s Crisis - Nz Frigate - Fiji Coup - Leader Reaction - Olympic Torch
SOLOMON’S CRISIS: There is a bloody escalation of violence in the Solomon Islands with new fighting breaking out near the capital of Honiara. The rebels from the Malaitian Eagle Force took a boat on Monday after the coup began and began shelling the nearby international airport. Foreign Minister Phil Goff says he fears a civil war may break out in the country.
NZ FRIGATE: Meanwhile a New Zealand frigate is traveling to the region possibly to help keep the peace and evacuate 225 the New Zealanders living in the area. Police in the region are apparently powerless to act against the armed rebels although the situation in the capital is reported to be calm. In New Zealand anxious Solomon Islanders wait for news from families and friends in the area.
FIJI COUP: Meanwhile Fiji has been kicked out of various Commonwealth decision making bodies by the Commonwealth Action Network – so far no international trade sanctions have been made. Foreign Minister Phil Goff may go with some commonwealth negotiators to pressure the Fiji to return to an elected democracy. First the delegation will go to the Solomon Islands.
LEADER REACTION: Meanwhile the Fiji coup leaders have dismissed the news of the Commonwealth sanctions saying Fiji wants to solve the problems by itself. Meanwhile, peace this morning was shattered as gun-fire broke out in the Parliamentary compound where the thirty political hostages were kept. No one was injured. A One News correspondent says there are discipline among the rebels and George Speight has handed over some of the more unruly elements to police.
OLYMPIC TORCH: There has been a safety scare after a 17 year old school girl fell under a bus while watching the Olympic torch being carried by netball star Beatrice Fuemana. The girl suffered moderate injuries to her leg.The event marred an otherwise happy run for the torch which reached Auckland today.