Monday, October 01, 2007

Fiji To Remain Suspended

Commonwealth Secretary General Don McKinnon(Photo:
Fiji to remain suspended
Fiji is to remain suspended from the Council of the Commonwealth following concerns raised by the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the lack of progress towards Fiji's return to democracy since last years coup.

Commonwealth Secretary General Don McKinnon told Radio New Zealand that Commonwealth countries discussed Fiji in a meeting in New York and they remain worried about the significant steps necessary for Fiji to hold elections in March 2009.

Following Interim Prime Minister Commodore Frank Bainimarama's address the UN General Assembly at the weekend, McKinnon said their concerns include the militarisation pf government departments, reports of human rights abuses and lack of timeframe fro organising elections.

McKinnon also stressed statements by Commodore Bainimarama that the SDL party will be banned from contesting the elections are undemocratic and unacceptable.

The Ministerial Action Group will send a delegation to Fiji before November to investigate the situation and inform the interim administration of its concerns and reasons for Fiji remaining suspended from the Commonwealth.

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