Fiji: Abrogation of Constitution

Press Statement
Richard Aker
Acting Deputy Department Spokesman, Bureau of Public Affairs, Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
April 10, 2009

The United States is deeply disappointed by the collapse of Fiji's political dialogue process and the abrogation of Fiji's constitution, which we see as movement away from the goal of returning Fiji to democratic governance and its formerly leading role in the Pacific. We are concerned by the implications this abrogation holds for the future of judicial independence, media freedom, and democracy itself in Fiji.

We call upon Fiji's interim authorities to respect the protections afforded the people of Fiji by the 1997 Constitution until the country can once again hold free and fair elections. The United States reiterates its call for Fiji to adhere to the timetable and benchmarks articulated by the Pacific Islands Forum. The United States believes that the return of democracy in Fiji will depend on an open and transparent process that includes the participation of all political parties in a genuine dialogue that is independent, inclusive, time-bound, and with no pre-determined outcome.

PRN: 2009/316