SOUTH PACIFIC FORUM CHIEF CALLS FOR NON-INTERFERENCE IN FIJI

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By Sean Dorney

SUVA, Fiji Islands (September 15, 2000 – Radio Australia)---The Secretary-General of the South Pacific Forum claims the Forum will lose its way if it starts to interfere in the domestic affairs of member countries like Fiji and Solomon Islands.

In an address delivered in Suva, Noel Levi spoke out against tougher action being taken to try to force a return of democratic government and normalcy.

Mr. Levi addressed a Rotary luncheon in Suva on the role of the South Pacific Forum in the current crises in Fiji and Solomon Islands.

Mr. Levi said a working group set up by Forum foreign ministers at a meeting in Apia last month was developing a series of principles and options to be put to next month's Forum in Kiribati.

However, he argued that the strength of the Forum lay in its consensus decision-making philosophy and its principle of non-interference in members' internal domestic affairs.

Mr. Levi claimed any attempt to change what he called this basic foundation of the organization would render it incompetent and ineffective in the future.

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

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