VANUATU APPEAL COURT HEARING ON DISSOLUTION OF PARLIAMENT SET FOR

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JANUARY 5

PORT VILA, Vanuatu (December 15, 1997 - PACNEWS)---The Appeal Court hearing of the case involving the dissolution of Vanuatu's Parliament by President Jean-Marie Leye has been set for January 5.

The date was agreed upon during an urgent meeting of the Judicial Services Commission Friday, Radio Vanuatu reports.

Due to the urgency of the case, the Commission decided to set the hearing for January 5 even though the courts are normally in holiday recess until January 15.

The Ministry of Justice says Acting Chief Justice Vincent Lunabek has begun talks with Judges from Australia, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea to preside over the hearing.

President Leye dissolved Parliament November 27 following a request from Prime Minister Serge Vohor, who was attempting to avoid a formal vote of no confidence. However, the Supreme Court ruled a week later that the action was illegal, and ordered the house back into business.

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