5 Aug 2011

Solomons PM says Fiji's MSG leadership legitimate

9:36 am on 5 August 2011

The Solomon Islands prime minister, Danny Philip, has taken issue with former Fiji army colonel, Ratu Tevita Mara's who says Fiji's interim leader, should be stripped of the chairmanship of the Melanesian Spearhed Group.

Mr Philip says the decision to have Commodore Frank Bainimarama assume the chairmanship of the MSG followed the organisation's charter.

He says he wouldn't prevent Col Mara from visiting the Solomons but says there'll be no government contact at any level.

Mr Philip says his government wants to see democracy return to Fiji, but see an open dialogue as the best way forward.

He says Fiji is a very important country to the region and to Solomon Islands, which has a large number of people living there.