28 May 2004

Fiji Prime Minister slams US for its human rights

10:12 am on 28 May 2004

Fiji's prime minister has attacked the United States for its human rights record.

Radio Fiji says Laisenia Qarase's attack, came in response to a statement by the US embassy in Suva, which accused Fiji of human rights abuses.

Mr Qarase says Fiji is no angel in this respect and has its weaknesses.

But, he says, Fiji's human rights abuses are negligible, compared with those of other countries around the world.

Mr Qarase says the United States wants to be the world leader, in human rights promotion.

But, he says, the United States is the country that has robbed people all over the world of many of their rights.

He says a good example is the world-wide news coverage of how American soldiers have treated Iraqis in their custody.

Mr Qarase says the US record is also tainted in Afghanistan and even at home.

He says the United States should clean up its own backyard first before pointing fingers at other countries.