The Fiji Labour Party has deplored the Coalition Government’s foreign policy stand supporting gross human rights violations in Israel and China.
Party Leader and former Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhry said: “It makes us wary of how such policies would translate into a Fiji context. Should we worry that our own human rights situation here could well be endangered or compromised now that we have a government supporting human rights violations elsewhere in the world?”
Chaudhry said the party on 13 October released a statement condemning the human rights atrocities committed on innocent people in Gaza.
“The continuing indiscriminate bombarding of North and South Gaza including hospitals, settlements and entire townships is now tantamount to genocide and must be soundly denounced, not condoned and supported.”
Referring to Fiji’s vote against a UN resolution in the week-end calling for a “sustainable truce” in the Israeli-Gaza war to allow emergency humanitarian aid to be channelled through to the victims of the war, Chaudhry said the world’s horror at the intensity of the Israeli offensive is evident from the fact that 120 countries voted in favour of the resolution. Only 12 other countries joined US and Israel in voting against the resolution – six of these votes were from the South Pacific States including Fiji.
“Apart from its ‘no’ vote on the UN resolution, Fiji has also withdrawn its name from a list of 51 nations calling on China to end its human rights violations against the Uyghur and Muslim minorities in Xinjiang.”
“Fiji’s stand on both the issues must send alarm signals to us here in Fiji on how the Rabuka government may react to human rights issues here.”
He also questioned the stand taken by Rabuka’s coalition partner, the NFP which strongly criticised Fiji’s vote against the UN Resolution but made it clear that did not in any way affect their support for the Coalition Government or the Prime Minister.
“The NFP must take a principled stand on the issue. It cannot run with the hare and hunt with the hounds simply because it suits their interest to do so. We note that NFP has said nothing on the China issue,” he added.