13 Mar 2008

Fiji Human Rights Commission will not bother replying to recent US report

10:20 am on 13 March 2008

The Fiji Human Rights Commission says it will not bother replying to a recent US report on human rights on Fiji because it was not consulted before the report was published.

The U.S report questioned human rights abuses in Fiji and the steps taken to address them.

It said under the interim Government, the military and police arbitrarily detained and sometimes abused individuals, resulting in three deaths; conducted searches without warrants; engaged in intimidation of the media; and restricted the right to assemble peacefully.

The Fiji Times reports that the Commission's chairperson, Dr Shaista Shameem, said in a statement that no one wanted the USA to be the guardian of human rights for the rest of the world.

Dr Shameem said the USA should tell Fiji how it intends to deal with gross rights violations committed by itself in Iraq.

She also added the USA should let the people of Fiji know whether any weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq.