16 Dec 2003

Fiji police say military not needed to combat crime wave

4:52 pm on 16 December 2003

Police in Fiji say they don't need the military to step in to help them counter an upsurge in crime.

Police spokesperson, Mesake Koroi, says police have the capability to contain the situation despite a call from the opposition leader, Mick Beddoes, to bring in the army.

Mr Koroi says leave is being cancelled and officers are being asked to postpone holidays so that an extra 100 police can be deployed in key areas.

He says he doesn't think the army is needed.

"We believe we have the capacity to contain it, we believe we have the manpower and capability to do this for the time being. But to bring in the military would take the situation to another level and will need legislative changes to be made as well for that to happen. But as normal I think the police are quite capable to handling it."

Mesake Koroi also says businesses are being asked to bring in private security for protection.