Fiji Coup - Armed Standoff - International Reaction - Fire Danger- Mangakino Revisited
FIJI COUP: There are new supporters for George Speight’s coup attempt today. All day George Speight has been awaiting a
reply from the Fijian Council of Chiefs after he rejected their offer to disestablish the democratically elected
Government of Mahendhra Choudry. Meanwhile a contingent of Fiji’s millitary engineers went to Parliament to support
Speight’s coup attempt, a show of a rise in popular support.
ARMED STANDOFF: There has been an angry standoff between Speight and his body guards and Fijian military after Speight
confronted the army outside the Parliament. The military had been stopping some supporters from entering Parliament.
Meanwhile a Chinese and three Indian businessman are being investigated for being behind the coup attempt by Fijian
INTERNATIONAL REACTION: The international community is pledging to put widespread economic sanctions on Fiji if it
follows the demands of Fiji leader George Speight. Fiji could become a pariah in the South Pacific treated in a similar
way to South Africa, says Helen Clark.
FIRE DANGER: The Fire Service is warning against the faulty instillation of wall heaters after two fires caused
fatalities over night. Two people died in one house blaze which totally destroyed the wooden house. The death of an old
woman in Havelock North came after she failed to install a smoke alarm.
MANGAKINO REVISITED: A year has passed since Mangakino Constable Murray Stretch was killed and the town is still
recovering from the violence. A group has been set up for the town’s youth. Unemployment and poverty is still high in
the township, but townspeople say they are making progress.