28 Dec 2005

Fiji minister in emergency meeting following military's takeover threat

2:51 pm on 28 December 2005

Fiji's minister for home affairs held an emergency meeting with the country's vice president and attorney general today following a warning by the military commander.

Radio Legend reports that Commodore Bainimarama has threatened to remove the chief executive of the home affairs ministry, Lesi Korovavala, and the minister himself, Josefa Vosanibola, if he doesn't listen to the military's advice on national security matters.

The radio says Mr Vosanibola has confirmed that he met the vice president, Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi, and the attorney general, Qoriniasi Bale, on the issue.

Mr Vosanibola says they are taking the threat seriously and appropriate action will be taken.

The police commissioner, Andrew Hughes, has also confirmed that the minister raised the matter with him today and called on the police to keep a close watch on the situation.

The latest standoff is over the delay by the home affairs ministry in recommending the commissioning of the judge advocate, Graham Leung, which has held up the retrial of 20 soldiers charged with the November 2000 mutiny.