No Peace Without Justice: Fiji must restore democracy and the rule of law

10 Apr, 2009 | Press Releases

Statement by Sergio Stanzani and Niccolo’ Figa-Talamanca, President and Secretary General of No Peace Without Justice:

The decision announced this morning by Fiji’s President Iloilo to abrogate the nation’s 1997 Constitution, to sack all magistrates, judges and other judicial officers and to assume executive power, as well as to delay elections until 2014 is the wrong course for Fiji and a strong step backwards for the people of Fiji’s aspirations to democracy and the rule of law.

It will only further deteriorate the political crisis in an already troubled South Pacific nation which in December 2006 saw the democratically elected government of Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase toppled by a military coup, the country’s fourth in two decades.

Yesterday, the second-highest court of Fiji ruled that the current Fijian Interim Administration led by Commodore Bainimarama, appointed further to the 2006 military takeover, was unlawful and should be replaced and recommended that elections should be held promptly.

No Peace Without Justice calls on the European Union to strongly condemn Today’s takeover by Fiji’s President Iloilo as well as to urge him to abide by its commitments to having elections this year to ensure the earliest possible restoration of democracy and the rule of law in that country.

For further information, contact Alison Smith at or +32-486-986 235 or Nicola Giovannini at or +32-2-548-3913.

No Peace Without Justice is a Brussels and Rome-based non-profit organisation that works for the protection and promotion of human rights, democracy, the rule of law and international justice.