AUSTRALIAN UNIONS THREATEN NEW FIJI TRADE BANS

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SYDNEY, Australia (September 7, 2000 – Radio Australia)---Australian unions have threatened to re-impose trade bans on Fiji.

Australian Council of Trade Unions President Sharon Burrows has just returned from a joint Australian-New Zealand trade union mission to Fiji. She says the Fiji government contains collaborators with May 19 coup leader George Speight, and many people in Fiji still live in fear.

"If we can't be convinced that there will be a speedy return to democracy within the framework of the 1997 constitution and if government, which is where we think the responsibility lies, don't take appropriate action, then we remain ready to assist if that would help," Burrows said.

"We've explained to the Fijian people that our first priority is always jobs. But we can't assist in terms of stabilizing the economy where we can be of value unless there's a return to democracy as soon as possible," she added.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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