1 Nov 2006

Fiji president backs military commander, says army

4:05 pm on 1 November 2006

The Fiji military says the president and commander-in-chief, Ratu Josefa Iloilo, has retained Commodore Frank Bainimarama as the military commander.

The military spokesman, Major Neumi Leweni, has told Radio Legend President Iloilo's action came after senior military officers pledged their loyalty and support for Commodore Bainimarama.

It happened only hours after the president had agreed to a request from the prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, to sack Commodore Bainimarama and replace him with a subordinate officer.

Major Leweni says they received confirmation from Government House last night that Commodore Bainimarama had been retained and the message had been passed on to all troops.

The prime minister is to give an address later today.

No details have been revealed.