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Next Fiji Government Should Review Military Decrees: New Zealand Law Society
Fiji was showing encouraging signs of a return to democracy but it was equally important it showed progress to restoring a system of balance between the government, courts and the executive, the New Zealand Law Society said as reported by Xinhua news agency.
The basic levels of democracy and the rule of law should be guaranteed by the Fijian Constitution which was released in September 2013, the Law Society's Rule of Law Committee convenor Austin Forbes said in a statement.
"However, the Law Society will be an interested observer on how the new government will deal with over 400 decrees made by the military government since 2006. It is to be hoped that these will all be reviewed," said Forbes.
The Pacific Islands Forum Ministerial Contact Group, chaired by New Zealand Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully, issued a statement following a visit to Fiji earlier this month welcoming "significant progress" towards democracy in Fiji.
New Zealand was among a group of Pacific nations that imposed sanctions on Fiji after the military takeover in 2006.
The Fijian government has pledged to hold elections in September.
Human rights groups say the Fijian authorities have been violating rights in the run-up to the elections with attempts to limit free speech, the right to protest and targeting of NGOs, trade unions and political parties to restrict public debate.
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