15 Jun 2006

Bridge to Tahiti's port blocked by protestors

9:29 am on 15 June 2006

Members of the dissolved GIP intervention force of French Polynesia have blocked the bridge leading to the port of Papeete in what they say is a staffing dispute.

The protesting group objects to the presence of guards close to the President being at the former GIP's marine base which it says is in contradiction to a deal struck with the government in January.

The blockade is also being supported by fishermen who demand that a fund be set up to help them cope with problems in the industry.

The blockade threatens to cause shortages in Tahiti because all fuel is stored in the port area.

There have been several prolonged blockades of the port in the past 15 months by the GIP until it was dissolved for its repeated insubordination.

The French state is responsible for keeping public roads open.