Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Fiji: thuggery

Something funny has been happening in Fiji. Prominent people "who are vocal against certain developments on the political front" (in the tortured circumlocution of the Fiji Times) are having their cars vandalised and their homes firebombed. Over the last month five journalists, politicians, businesswomen and unionists have had their houses and cars stoned in the middle of the night. Then over the weekend the attackers escalated, attacking the homes of former army officer Sakiusa Raivoce and Fiji Times editor-in-chief Netani Rika with Molotov cocktails.

What these people have in common is that they all support human rights, oppose the coup and want a quick return to democracy. In Fiji, that now apparently makes you a target for the thugs of the military regime and its supporters.

The authorities are completely uninterested. The police drag their feet, the military is absolutely silent. The regime has so far refused to condemn the attacks. And their collective silence speaks volumes.