8 Sep 2009

Amnesty urges China to press Fiji regime to restore rule of law

2:08 pm on 8 September 2009

Amnesty International is calling on China and other foreign donors to press the government in Fiji to return to the rule of law.

In a new report it says the deteriorating human rights situation in Fiji following the abrogation of the constitution in April this year, demands international action.

Jo O'Brien reports

"The report entitled, Fiji: Paradise Lost, documents repressive tactics used by the military led regime to stifle protest and intimidate its critics. These include beatings, arbitrary arrests and detention, severe limitations on the rights to freedom of expression and association, and interference in the judiciary and media. Amnesty International says China has massively increased its financial assistance to Fiji since the 2006 coup, and should use its influence to resolve the constitutional crisis. It says China claims it doesn't interfere in other country's affairs, but it has clearly favoured one side in Fiji and has ignored the country's human rights situation. The human rights organisation is also calling on Fiji's interim government to repeal the public emergency regulations, which it says gives the military and security forces absolute control, and immunity from prosecution. Its Pacific researcher Apolosi Bose was in Fiji in April and interviewed more than 80 people for the report."