Supporting Fiji's return to democracy

2014-02-14 04:09:11 | Al Muslim News
Supporting Fiji's return to democracy


The Australian Government is committed to supporting Fiji's return to democracy and continues to work closely with Fiji and other international donors to support preparations for democratic elections by September 2014. As part of this important bilateral and regional effort, I will travel to Fiji on 14-15 February as a member of the Pacific Islands Forum Ministerial Contact Group to observe Fiji's progress towards democracy. The Ministerial Contact Group was established by Pacific Islands Forum Leaders to monitor developments in Fiji and to engage with the Fiji Government. It comprises senior ministers from Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu. During the visit, the delegation will meet with senior Fiji ministers, registered political parties and civil society organisations. Australia is Fiji's largest bilateral aid donor, with programs focusing on improving access to education, strengthening primary health services, and supporting Fiji's transition to democracy. My visit will provide an important opportunity to discuss with the Fiji Government ways we can build the bilateral relationship into a dynamic and productive partnership. My discussions will underline the Australian Government's commitment to normalise our relationship as Fiji progresses towards elections..

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