19 Aug 2005

Rebel workers in French Polynesia should be charged over illegal strike - politician

3:26 pm on 19 August 2005

A centrist politician in French Polynesia, Nicole Bouteau, says the rebellious members of the GIP intervention force should face the law for staging an illegal strike.

300 GIP members have blockaded the port of Papeete for the third time in five months in an action which Mrs Bouteau suggests is being orchsterated by the opposition Tahoeraa Huiraatira of Gaston Flosse.

President Oscar Temaru has given the GIP until tonight to lift the blockade as the economy is being disrupted, with fuel supplies running out.

The GIP wants new employment contracts for its newest members and has vowed to toughen its protest.

Mrs Bouteau of the Alliance For Democracy says she stands behind President Oscar Temaru.

"I think that justice has to be done because the strike is illegal. Maybe the solution is to dissolve the GIP."