9 Jul 2009

Fiji hopes for Forum invitation despite suspension

3:07 pm on 9 July 2009

Fiji's interim prime minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, says he hopes Fiji will be allowed to sit in at next month's Pacific Islands Forum summit in Australia despite its suspension.

Commodore Bainimarama refused to attend last year's Niue summit and he sent his attorney-general to the Papua New Guinea summit in January which was called to discuss the Fiji situation.

The Forum suspended Fiji in May after its interim regime refused to commit to relinquishing the power seized in the 2006 coup by holding elections this year.

Speaking to Auckland's Radio Tarana, Commodore Bainimarama says if the Forum invites him to the Cairns summit in August he will attend.

He is in Vanuatu for an extraordinary meeting of the Melanesian Spearhead Group whose members backed Fiji's Forum suspension.

Commodore Bainimarama says he wants to explain his road map which will provide for elections in five years, a year after a new constitution is to have been drawn up.