7 Sep 2006

Worldwide opposition promised if Fiji passes laws controlling broadcast media

7:07 pm on 7 September 2006

An international union movement is threatening to set 200 million workers against the Fiji government if it tries to push through legislation controlling the broadcast media.

The warning has come from the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, the largest trade union umbrella body in the world.

Its Melbourne-based president, Sharan Burrow, says the movement's appalled by the government's bid to control the media with its Broadcasting Licensing Bill.

Ms Burrow says it will fiercely oppose any moves to bring in such legislation and warns that trade sanctions could be possible.

"If pushed through then we'll look at all the options from the relationships that are there with the European Union, the Australia/ New Zealand government, all of the trading relationships that are based on respect for Fiji as a democracy, certainly could be at risk."

Ms Burrow says the bill is not only a breach of workers rights but a breach of democratic rights and principles.