13 Jan 2007

Tonga emergency period extended to February

8:22 am on 13 January 2007

Tonga's emergency period initially imposed following the riots on November 16th has been extended for another month.

Deputy prime minister and minister of health, Dr. Viliami Tangi, has told Radio Tonga that based on a report on the current security threat level in the Kingdom from the commander of the Tonga Defence Services, cabinet has recommeded to the Privy Council that the emergency period be extended until February.

The emergency period was initially imposed following November's riots that torched and damaged most of the major stores and Asian businesses in downtown Nuku'alofa.

Meanwhile, the number of people whose names appear on the so-called Black List now stands at 13.

Radio Tonga says it's understood the list consists of names of people suspected of playing a part in the riots or being instrumental in inciting it.

The list is believed to have originally contained about 70 names including some of the people's representatives to the Legislative Assembly, a noble, some of the business owners and some people involved with the pro-democracy movement.