I heard on the ABC radio the news expected, that Fiji is out of the Commonwealth. No surprises there. The Fiji media ran the story, except radio Fiji denied it! The Fiji papers these days run mostly soft stories such as a fish caught by a Labasa fisherman. etc. etc.
Here's a report about the suspensions from a NZ source: I like the bit of a muddle in the middle!
Fiji suspended from Commonwealth
Updated 8:23AM Wednesday Sep 02, 2009
The Commonwealth has officially suspended Fiji after it failed to respond to demands to begin restoring democracy to the island nation, resume dialogue with opposition groups and call elections by next year. Fiji had until Tuesday midnight (local time) to meet the conditions.
"This is an announcement I make with deep regret. It is a step the Commonwealth is now obliged to take, and one that it takes in sorrow," Commonwealth Secretary-General, Kamalesh Sharma, said in a statement reported CNN.
Fiji would therefore lose most of its Commonwealth aid and would not be allowed to participate in the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
Representatives of Fiji's interim government would also be excluded from participating in inter-governmental meetings and activities.
On 21 August Sharma received a letter from Commodore Bainimarama reaffirming his commitment to the principles of the Commonwealth but Bainimarama's response did not meet the terms set out by the Commonwealth reports The Commonwealth website.
However, Sharma left the door open to future dialogue between the The Commonwealth and Fiji.
"I welcome the invitation from Commodore Bainimarama to meet my Special Representative in Fiji in September, and look forward to continuing my good offices engagement to promote adherence to Commonwealth principles and the welfare of the people of Fiji", Sharma said according to the Commonwealths website.
Commodore Frank Bainimarama took over control of Fiji's government in December 2006 after a bloodless coup.
He has vowed to reform the country's electoral system and eradicate the "endemic corruption" before holding any general election.
In a radio interview in Fiji, Bainimarama said that the Fijian government believed "the only path to ensuring sustainable and true democracy" included holding elections in 2014 said the BBC.
- NZ HERALD STAFF
And the soft news: Well, at least it was a huge fish!
from the Fiji Sun which failed to report on the Commonwealth decision:
Big catch for young Qelewaqa fisherman
It was a big catch for young Nitesh Reddy of Qelewaqa settlement outside Labasa.
Last Sunday Nitesh caught a huge fish locally known as Soisoi which weighed in at 99.5kilogramme. He said this is his biggest catch after working for five years as a fisherman. etc. etc.