7 Nov 2009

NZ visas in Fiji on hold

11:53 am on 7 November 2009

No visas are currently been issued to people in Fiji who need to travel to New Zealand, while its mission in Suva remains closed.

The Government here says it's stunned that Fiji's interim Government is making it difficult for New Zealand to operate a visa service for Fiji's people.

It was shut when Wellington's envoy to Suva was expelled after Fiji accused New Zealand of interfering in the Fiji judiciary.

The Foreign Affairs Minister, Murray McCully, says ordinary people in Fiji are missing out.

"One of the areas that has left the prime minister stunned and myself as well is the fact that they are prepared to make it difficult for us to operate a service that is exclusively for their own benefit. For a service that was designed assist Fijian people, it has no other purpose. I'm just staggered they can make it difficult for us to operate."

Murray McCully says the Government hopes to re-open the High Commission next week.