29 Apr 2010

Fiji regime continues Forum spat with Samoa

6:05 pm on 29 April 2010

The verbal spat between Fiji and Samoa over the Pacific Islands Forum is continuing with an interim regime official calling Samoa's Prime Minister a puppet of New Zealand and Australia.

Earlier this week, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi said it was ridiculous for the Forum's secretariat to remain in Suva when the country is being run by a dictatorship.

He suggested agency could be moved to New Zealand or Australia.

But the Fiji Land Forces Commander Lt Col Pita Driti has told Auckland-based Radio Tarana that Tuilaepa wants the Forum in Apia and has been pushing for this.

He says the interim Fiji leader, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, says Tuilaepa can have it but the region wouldn't accept it.

"Our PM thinks that if he wants it, he can take it. Pacific Islanders will not respect him because he is a puppet of the two countries. He talks on their behalf and he's a parrot. He's a parrot and a puppet, that's all."