19 Feb 2007

Amnesty seeks answers on Fijian man's death in army camp

2:42 pm on 19 February 2007

The international human rights organisation, Amnesty International, has called for an investigation into the death of a Fiji man, Nakelo Verebasaga, who died in military custody last month.

The organisation has expressed concern at continuing reports of threats by the military against critics of the coup, arbitrary detention and torture.

The reported violations come despite assurances by the Fiji authorities that human rights provisions would be upheld.

Amnesty says according to reliable information, the military has beaten people suspected of drug crimes or prostitution.

And Amnesty's New Zealand director, Ced Simpson, says the death of Mr Verebasaga on January 5th at the military barracks is not fully explained.

"We know he was pronounced dead at the barracks hospital several hours later. Obviously we want to see the results of an independent investigation made public and the responsible individuals brought to justice."

Ced Simpson of Amnesty International