4 Apr 2008

Fiji says Cuban help sought as neighbours turn away

4:17 pm on 4 April 2008

One of Fiji's prominent diplomats says the country must look elsewhere for help to ease its medical shortages because its traditional neighbours won't help.

Berenado Vunibobo is the military-appointed Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York.

He says Fiji should look to Cuba to source pharmaceutical products and medical training for doctors.

He says other Pacific countries have Cuban doctors working in their medical services, or have sent students to study medicine there.

"In my view if New Zealand has adopted almost an attitude that is full of virulence, we have got to look elsewhere. What sort of friends do we have when you really have problems on your hands, and those whom you look up to for a hundred years plus dump you?"

Berenado Vunibobo says talking to Cuba won't be his first priority when he goes to the United Nations.