1 Jun 2007

NZ Foreign Minister says lifting of Fiji emergency regulations only a first step

11:13 am on 1 June 2007

New Zealand's Foreign Minister, Winston Peters, has acknowledged the Fiji interim administration's decision to lift the emergency regulations.

He says the decision is a good first step on the road back to constitutional government, but it is only a first step.

He has encouraged the interim administration to take further steps to re-establish the independence and integrity of the Fiji justice system.

New Zealand, he says, remains committed to engaging with Fiji, to assist with a return to democracy.

He added, we continue to seek substantive steps towards the return of a democratically elected government for the Fiji people,

Meanwhile, the chairman of Transparency International in Fiji, Harry Singh, says his organisation welcomes the government's action.

"We perceive that the government is moving towards the road map that it has agreed with the European Union and our international partners, and that it seems to us that it is moving towards the rule of law, so we are happy with it."