15 Jun 2011

Fiji regime wants "amicable" resolution of Minerva Reef dispute

2:00 pm on 15 June 2011

Fiji's interim government says it'll try to resolve maritime disputes amicably but take legal action if necessary.

This follows Tonga's reconstruction of a navigation beacon on the Minerva Reef which is claimed by both countries.

Sally Round reports.

"Earlier this week, Tonga issued a photo of the fixed beacon and restated its claim to the two atolls which lie south of Tonga and Fiji. Tonga accused the Fijian military of destroying two beacons its built on the reef which it says are essential for shipping safety. Fiji says the Minerva Reef falls within its Exclusive Economic Zone, which was registered with the United Nations thirty years ago. It says any attempt to dispute this should go through relevant international and legal bodies. United Nations officials from both countries have previously held talks on ownership in New York."