The Speaker of the Nauru parliament has accused five MPs suspended from the house of high treason.
The MPs make up more than a quarter of the parliament but Speaker Ludwig Scotty says their electorates are well served by the other MPs in their multi-member seats.
The suspended MPs, who believe their constitutional rights have been infringed, are seeking legal redress, but have been frustrated by the government's removal of the Chief Justice.
Two weeks ago their salaries were stopped and phones and offices taken.
Mr Scotty says they might be allowed back if they were to apologise, but he says parliament is working better without them.
"They went to the foreign media talking against Nauru, that means against the government of Nauru. You know it could be very difficult by way of assistance to Nauru if somebody goes around talking away like that. Don't you think that that is tantamount to high treason?"
The Speaker of the Nauru's parliament, Ludwig Scotty.