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Bainimarama also cancels subscriptions

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Sept. 7, 2009) – Fiji's military ruler has banned all government advertising in the Fiji Times, the country's national newspaper.

The move by interim leader Frank Bainimarama is expected to have a significant impact on the paper's revenue.

The Fiji media has been operating under harsh censorship since April.

But the Fiji Times' Editor-in-Chief, Netani Rika, has continued to criticise the tough restrictions on freedom of speech.

In a government circular, the Fiji Public Service Head, Pramesh Chand, has told all government ministries, departments and agencies, Commodore Bainimarama wants all government advertising in the Fiji Times to cease immediately.

They have also been told to cancel all subscriptions to the daily newspaper, which has just celebrated its 140th year of publication.

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