12 Jul 2007

U.S. ambassador to Fiji rejects allegations of misinformation

10:46 am on 12 July 2007

The U.S. ambassador to Fiji, Larry Dinger, is rejecting allegations by the interim prime minister, that he misinformed U.S. officials of what's happening in the country.

Commodore Bainimarama had said it was obvious that a team from the U.S. Congress, which visited Fiji last week, had not spoken with a wide cross section of society.

The Commodore also alleged, in a clear reference to Mr Dinger, that the team was being briefed by somebody who didn't understand, or want to understand, the events of the coup.

The ambassador declined to be interviewed but he put out a media statement saying that members of Congress make their own independent judgements.

Mr Dinger also said it was the delegation which requested what meetings they wanted, including with members of the deposed parliament while he proposed they should also meeting with representatives of the interim government.

The ambassador said the Congressmen came to their own conclusions after hearing a range of views.

The U.S. delegation released a statement at the end of their visit calling for Fiji to meet the election deadline of 2009, saying that any delay would be unacceptable.