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SUVA, Fiji Islands (February 7, 2002 – Radio New Zealand International)---Leading lawyers from throughout the Pacific will meet this weekend, February 9-10, in Nadi to discuss common issues and concerns.

The leaders of the bar in 16 Pacific island countries are being brought together by the International Bar Association, the IBA, with funding from the New Zealand and Australian governments.

The IBA says it has long seen a need to provide support and training for bar associations and legal institutions in developing countries.

Bruce Slane, who heads the IBA in New Zealand, says many of these lawyers operate in very small jurisdictions yet have quite large problems.

"The Law of the Sea, that's being discussed, issues relating to the organization of the legal profession, disciplinary matters, that sort of thing.

"And we've even got the former New Zealand race relations conciliator, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, talking about managing diversity in Pacific island countries," Mr. Slane said.

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

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