22 Nov 2006

Fiji military chief briefs president about anti-government plans

3:22 pm on 22 November 2006

Fiji's military commander, Commodore Bainimarama, is reported to have briefed President Iloilo on its plans to clean up the Qarase government in two weeks unless the government agrees to its demands.

Radio Legend reports that the briefing took place when Commodore Bainimarama called on the president before leaving for New Zealand to bring him up to date on the current impasse between the military and the government.

Government House will not comment on the meeting but the radio says reliable sources gave details of what was discussed.

Meanwhile, the prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, has made a public plea in parliament for dialogue with the military.

Mr Qarase called on the military commander and his officers to think of the consequences of the climate of fear and tension that they have created.

He said this has not only affected overseas confidence in Fiji but it has also divided Fiji's society because while the majority of one community appears to favour military intervention, the other major ethnic group does not support this.

Mr Qarase said too much damage has already been done, the country is suffering and it's time to resolve the problems.