23 Mar 2005

New Caledonia and Fiji swap military personnel this week

10:19 am on 23 March 2005

New-Caledonia-based French armed forces and the Fiji military are swapping personnel this week in joint exercises in both Fiji and the French Pacific territory.

A platoon of about twenty French soldiers from the New Caledonia-based armed forces (FANC) is on joint exercise in Fiji's jungle near Suva.

Meanwhile in New Caledonia, 25 Fiji soldiers are undergoing various exercises including swimming with a full pack with the Pacific Marine Infantry Airborne Regiment.

In February FANC Commander Brigadier General Alain Daniel and Fiji military commander Frank Bainimarama signed an agreement to resume French-Fiji defence co-operation, four years after it was suspended as a result of Fiji's 2000 coup.