29 Jan 2004

Fiji multi-party cabinet under EU spotlight

7:15 am on 29 January 2004

Fiji's constitutional impasse on the multi-party cabinet will come under high level European Union scrutiny next week.

Fiji TV reports that this will happen when the EU's commissioner for development and humanitarian assistance, Paul Nielson, makes a two-day visit to Suva.

The head of the EU office in Fiji, Frans Baan, says the political situation has not been resolved and the EU will be monitoring this in the context of the Cotonou Agreement of which Fiji is one of the ACP members.

Mr Baan says Mr Nielson will be holding talks on the issue with the Prime Minister, Laisenia Qarase, the Labour Party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry, and President Iloilo.

Mr Baan stressed that the political situation will be discussed and will continue to be discussed.

Mr Nielson will also sign an aid agreement for educational assistance and visit the site of the new EU-funded, 13-million US dollar Rewa Bridge.