New Zealand PM Says Fiji Is ‘Heading In The Right Direction’

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John Key accepts immunity provisions in new Constitution

By Mereani Gonedua

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, September 2, 2013) – New Zealand Prime Minister John Key has admitted that Fiji is now heading in the right direction.

Key’s comments follows the release of Fiji’s new Constitution which also includes a provision giving full immunity to those involved in any takeover and will not be able to be provoked by any future leaders.

"On face value we accept that much of it is heading in the right direction," Key told New Zealand Herald.

Key said the immunity provision was a compromise which could be necessary to guarantee that Fiji held fair and democratic elections next year.

"Practically, I don't think there's any way you're going to get a constitution and elections held without it.

It's a kind of price for taking the next step," he said "It's not a deal breaker from our point of view.

We might not like it but it's not a deal breaker." Key will be in the Marshall Islands for the Pacific Islands Forum meeting said New Zealand will be discussing ways of providing assistance to Fiji during elections and is is likely to come in the form of funding, security and observers.

"I might be proven to be wrong, but I'd be way more than 50/50 that they'll hold those elections.

In the end, this is a country which has been beset by a coup culture and we hope that we've closed that chapter."

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