Thursday, July 17, 2008

No Signs of Fiji Moving To Elections

No Signs of Fiji Moving To Elections - 16/07/2008

New Zealand Foreign Minister Winston Peters said Commodore Frank Bainimarama has not done anything to persuade New Zealand to lift sanctions or to show that he is moving towards elections.As the Forum Ministerial Contact group completed its final meetings this morning, Stuff NZ reported that Peters said that Commodore Bainimarama raised the New Zealand sanctions during their meeting yesterday.Peters said they had made it clear that if they saw signs towards an election developing then they would relent but at this point in time they see no reason to change.The New Zealand Foreign Minister said there was no reason Fiji could not hold an election before March next year if there was the political will to do so.Meanwhile, his Australian Counterpart Stephen Smith said the meeting with Commodore Bainimarama was worthwhile and talks were polite and professional.However, Smith stressed that the travel bans currently in place on members and supporters of the interim government will remain in place and if and when Fiji moves genuinely, makes progress towards a democratic state, conducts elections, then it will be business as usual.

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