The wives of five former Fiji soldiers working as mercenaries in Bougainville have snubbed Papua New Guinea's minister for Bougainville affairs, Sir Peter Barter.
Sir Peter arrived in Fiji this week to ask the wives of the mercenaries training a private militia for the failed money scheme operator Noah Musingku to persuade their husbands to leave.
But the Fiji Sun reports that the attempt has failed because the wives refused to meet him.
Sir Peter is quoted as saying he does not want to create any embarrassment and would rather leave the matter to the Fiji authorities to resolve.
The five fully armed mercenaries have said they will not leave Bougainville until they are paid the 1-million US dollars each that they were promised by Mr Musingku who describes himself as the King of Papala.