7 Mar 2011

Former Fiji minister in Australia asylum bid - report

2:28 pm on 7 March 2011

A former Fiji government minister, Samisoni Tikonisau, says he will seek political asylum in Australia after he was arrested and allegedly beaten by the Fiji military last month.

Mr Tikoinasau, who was treated at a Brisbane hospital after he entered the country on a tourist visa, has told the newspaper, The Australian, that he plans to apply for a protection visa in Australia.

He says he will return to Fiji once democracy is restored.

Mr Tikonisau fled Fiji after being detained and allegedly interrogated for three days at Suva's military barracks.

He was arrested after distributing an anti-regime DVD to villagers in his former electorate.