World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

FIJI: Rebel leader gains more support

SUVA (Pacnews) -- Intense negotiations are underway in Fiji today as coup leader George Speight claims majority support from the country's chiefs, Pacnews reports.

Speight has reportedly secured the support of Ratu Josefa Iloilo, a high chief of western Fiji and who was until recently the country's vice president.

Ratu Josefa, together with the president, Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara, lost their position when the military declared martial law and took over the running of the country on May 29.

Ratu Josefa has offered to meet Fiji's military commander, Commodore Frank Bainimarama today during which he is expected to ask the military to hand-over power to a civilian government.

News reports over the weekend say Ratu Josefa and Speight met and agreed that the military should not run the country. Instead, Commodore Bainimarama and his military council should appoint a President who will then appoint an interim civilian government.

Speight has reportedly agreed that Ratu Josefa be offered the position of President while Speight's candidate for the high office, Ratu Jope Seniloli be offered the vice president's position.

Ratu Josefa spent the most part of this morning meeting Speight and his advisers at Ratu Josefa's residence in the capital, Suva. Aides say the western division chief was being briefed before he meets Commodore Bainimarama.

It is not unclear what the military's position will be, but the army commander has made it clear on several occasions that he would not hand-over power to a civilian government as yet.

He said the military would first like to see law and order restored in Fiji.

In another development, a planned march by civilians opposed to the ousting of the Mahendra Chaudhry government was called off today at the request of the military.

Organiser Ben Padarath, whose mother is one of the 32 hostages being held by Speight in the parliamentary complex, was taken by police for questioning.

Padarath had wanted protesters to march from the western city of Lautoka to the capital, Suva, a distance of about 400 kilometres.

Meanwhile, another part of Fiji has threatened to secede and form its own separate government.

The idea of turning the Tovata confederacy, a traditional grouping of provinces in northern and eastern Fiji, into a separate entity was raised at the weekend by a high chief in the area, Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu. Ratu Naiqama was an opposition parliamentarian in the now dissolved parliament of Fiji.... PNS (ENDS)

+++niuswire

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

ALSO:

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO: