17 May 2003

U.S. pushes Fiji to sign agreement over the International Criminal court

9:34 am on 17 May 2003

The United States wants Fiji to sign a bilateral agreement not to hand over its nationals to the International Criminal Court, the ICC.

Radio Fiji says Fiji's participation in any U.S.-sponsored peacekeeping force in Iraq could depend on Fiji agreeing to sign the accord.

It says a U.S. national wanted by the ICC has been a fugitive in Fiji for some time.

Fiji has already signed the Rome agreement setting up the International Criminal court which requires participating countries to surrender suspected international criminals to the ICC.

The U.S. has already reached a non-surrender agreement with a number of small Pacific Island countries and Tonga is reported to have already sent 300 military personnel to Iraq.