28 Nov 2006

NGOs say Fiji needs to resolve crisis without foreign intervention

8:13 pm on 28 November 2006

A coalition of NGOs in Fiji says allowing other Pacific governments to try and resolve the escalating standoff between the Fiji military and government is an admission the country cannot solve its own problems.

A spokesperson for Concerned Citizens for Peace, Virisila Buadromo, who also heads the Fiji Women's Rights Movement, says the country needs to use its own legal processes and democratic institutions to overcome the impasse.

Talks, brokered by New Zealand, and involving the military commander, Commodore Frank Bainimarama and the prime minister Laisenia Qarase, are set to be held on Wednesday in Wellington.

Ms Buadromo says the group would have preferred New Zealand to take a different approach.

"We would have preferred if they had provided advice to the parties involved in this political impasse and then resolve it here in Fiji, using local mediators who are skilled, who know the local context, and to be able to have an impasse whereby all those who are involved can take ownership of whatever resolution they come to."