6 Jun 2003

Fiji military warns plotters that law will be enforced

6:31 am on 6 June 2003

Fiji's military commander has warned those planning to create instability in the coming months that they will face the full brunt of the law as well as the military.

And he has rejected any early release of the coup front man, George Speight.

Commodore Frank Bainimarama gives the warning in an interview with the publisher of Islands Business, Robert Keith Reid, in this month's edition of the magazine.

Commodore Bainimarama says there is a real risk of more unrest in the months ahead because nationalism will rear its ugly head.

But, he says, if certain people create trouble to save themselves, they will find that contrary to events in 2000, the army will not be standing around in the streets twiddling their thumbs.

Commodore Bainimarama says the military is determined to maintain law and order, adding that there is not going to be another George Speight.

He says Speight can be released in 12 years but not now - that is the stance of the military.

On moves by Speight's brother and government MP Samisoni Tikonisau to collect 10-thousand signatures to get him released, Commodore Bainimarama says the army can collect 800-thousand signatures to keep Speight on Nukulau.