5 Oct 2009

Drop in foreign work may impact Fiji military

7:43 am on 5 October 2009

The drop off in overseas work opportunities for those in Fiji's armed forces could have an impact on morale.

The global financial downturn and steady withdrawal of US forces from Iraq has seen a fall off in security work available for former soldiers.

Last week, the interim Prime Minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, complained to world leaders in New York over his country's troops being barred from joining any new UN peacekeeping operations.

A former Colonel in the Fiji Army, Jone Baledrokadroka, who has campaigned against the interim regime from Australia, says the military is propping up what he calls a dictatorship.

He says many in the armed forces will be disappointed at the falling away of international opportunities:

"He needs to be on their right side by giving them goodies and this is it , no goodies for the boys and the boys get upset and he can very much be toppled."

Jone Baledrokadroka believes the members of the military in Fiji need to start thinking about the impact of backing an unelected government.