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FIJI: Treason Trial Behind Closed Doors

* Pacific Media Watch Online - check the website for archive and links:

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SUVA (FijiLive/Daily Post/Pacific Media Watch): The treason trial of journalist/publicist Josefa Nata and politician Timoci Silatolu was held in closed court yesterday, the Daily Post reports.

This was after Nata¹s defence lawyer asked the court to close for discussions regarding the implication of Nata and Silatolu in Viliame Savu¹s misprision of treason trial.

Nata¹s lawyer, Alexander Wolf said he was concerned with the media coverage that implicated his client and asked for an in-camera discussion with both defence and prosecution counsels and Justice Andrew Wilson.

Savu¹s misprision of treason trial two days ago, had shown a police statement where Savu said some members from prominent Fijian political parties had known about the May 19 takeover of Parliament a day before it occurred.

Savu had said Nata and Silatolu were part of a meeting on May 18, 2000 where George and Jim Speight revealed that a coup was to happen the next day.

The treason trial will continue today at 10am.


PACIFIC MEDIA WATCH ONLINE http://www.pmw.c2o.org

PACIFIC MEDIA WATCH is an independent, non-profit, non-government organisation comprising journalists, lawyers, editors and other media workers, dedicated to examining issues of ethics, accountability, censorship, media freedom and media ownership in the Pacific region. Launched in October 1996, it has links with the Journalism Program at the University of the South Pacific, Bushfire Media based in Sydney, Journalism Studies at the University of PNG (UPNG), the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism (ACIJ), Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand, and Community Communications Online (c2o).

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