12 Dec 2008

New Zealand Minister says compromise needed by all sides in quest to restore Fiji democracy

4:00 pm on 12 December 2008

The New Zealand Foreign Minister, Murray McCully, says he believes the Fiji interim Government has shown a willingness to compromise over the push for a return to democracy.

This, despite the military regime refusing to budge on its decision to pull out of staging a poll by March of next year.

Mr McCully, who has been in Suva with the Pacific Islands Forum Ministerial Contact Group, says they had no option but to accept this stance and it's up to regional leaders to decide what action will be taken in response.

He says there are still hopes of an election later next year and the Contact Group had aimed to ensure there were no impediments to this.

Mr McCully says there is a need for compromise on all sides.

"The sense that I got was that the meetings that have occurred in recent times have shown that at least the people can sit in the room and share their different views. I think the readiness of the interim administration to contemplate some sort of involvement from the Commonwealth, the United Nations, as well as the Forum provides a positive element as well. I think that sort of involvement from the international community will be an important ingredient."