3 Jul 2007

NZ's foreign minister says Fiji sanctions sending strong message

10:42 am on 3 July 2007

The Foreign Affairs Minister says the widening of sanctions against Fiji will send a strong message to its rulers that democracy must be restored.

In response to the expulsion of New Zealand's high commissioner to Fiji, travel sanctions against coup supporters have been widened to stop them transiting New Zealand.

And people who have been appointed to head government departments and agencies will also face travel bans.

Winston Peters says the move emphasises that Fiji's relationship with New Zealand is suffering because of the military's actions.

"It's not business as usual, as they had told so many people in Fiji post the coup it would be, they were warned that sadly these measures we would have to take, would be taken pre the coup, that it would not be business as usual and now that's the reality."

Winston Peters says other measures include further restrictions on high level contact between the two countries.