28 Jun 2007

Fiji interim government pleas with New Zealand to think again about sanctions

2:19 pm on 28 June 2007

Fiji's interim attorney general Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum says the interim government is open for talks to clarify why New Zealand wants to impose further sanctions on Fiji.

New Zealand's Prime Minister Helen Clark says that a further tightening of sanctions would be announced on Monday, mainly on travel restrictions.

The tightening of sanctions comes after New Zealand's high commissioner Michael Green was declared persona non grata and told to leave Fiji.

Mr Khaiyum says the interim government is working hard towards moving the country forward, and doesn't see what the sanctions are meant to achieve, or how it is meant to help to get Fiji back on track.

"It does not all go well when you have sanctions by, for example New Zealand, or threats of further sanctions, as it is really quite confusing as to what the objections are, and what are they are trying to achieve? I mean if the objective is for example to have travel advisories that aren't really reflective of the current realities - are they trying to stifle the economy, are they trying to bring it to a standstill, or the hardship that will fall on the ordinary men and women of this country?"

Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.