7 Oct 2004

Kiribati opposition alleges Taiwan link in attempted assault

5:29 pm on 7 October 2004

The Kiribati opposition says an attempted assault on one of its members, Dr Harry Tong, may have been instigated by Taiwan.

An opposition spokesperson, Brian Orme, says a knife wielding man threatened Dr Tong last night but was chased away.

Mr Orme says Dr Tong recognised the attacker but attempts to get police help were unsuccessful.

He has dismissed suggestion that the incident involved Dr Tong's brother, the prime minister Anote Tong.

"We do suspect that maybe Taiwan was involved in this somehow because Dr Tong has been very critical of Taiwan's dominance in our own domestic affairs. They do dominate our domestic affairs in the last few months and they have bought and bribed their way into a great amount of authority and it appears that are almost running our country now."

Brian Orme