#header-inner img {margin: 0 auto !important; #header-inner {text-align: Center ;} Fiji Coupfourpointfive

Monday, September 1, 2014

Captured troops radioed for help, soldiers names released

Al Nusra: Stolen UN vehicles.

Fiji's rash desire for friends has come back to bite it on the bum.

Intel sources claim the captured Fiji troops radioed Israel for help but were turned away because of Fiji's decision to cement diplomatic ties with Iran (and North Korea) in 2012.

Sources say the captured men sought help from Israel but were told no cavalry would be coming because Fiji soldiers no longer had preferential treatment.

Negotiations are meanwhile underway for the release of the captured soldiers but it's not certain who is doing the talking to the radical Islamic group, Al Nusra.

Media reports suggest Fiji is leading the negotiations but
nothing has been confirmed with RFMF commander, Mosese Tikoitoga, reiterating only that they've had no contact with the men but are trying to get them released. 

Tikoitoga has also revealed Fiji is training more men to send as replacements for the captured troops.

The decision is an unpopular one and has sparked more criticism of the RFMF, especially Tikoitoga who earlier this week broke protocol by revealing the commanding officer had weighed up his options and decided to act as a 'cat' rather than a 'tiger'.

The commander is believed to be Savenaca Siwatabu.

Al Nusra says in its statement it took the 45 troops because "UNDOF was aiding the government of President Bashar al-Assad and had ignored the suffering of the Syrian people."

It says it will release the men in exchange for humanitarian aid for Syria saying the 'detainees are in a safe place, and in a healthy condition."

Frank Bainimarama, who sent more than 400 men to Golan Heights last year knowing the mission was dangerous, has broken his silence to deny the troops were 'combatants' following wide criticism of the troop's decision to surrender, unlike the soldiers from the Phillipines who stood their ground.

Pictures of Bainimarama campaigning hard out in the past five days as he distanced himself from the capture have done him no favours. They show him to be cold and calculating and  not man enough to take responsibility for sending Fiji to war. Bainimarama only made a nationwide speech on the captured men yesterday, four days after the soldiers were taken prisoners.

Also unpalatable these past few days were pictures of Aiyaz Sayed Khaiyum playing up for the cameras on a Fiji First Fun Day in Nausori, a day after the men were captured.

Playing to the gallery: Khaiyum throwing lollies at the Fiji First Fun Day
Both will no doubt try to wash their hands of the fate of the 45 troops as they forge ahead with their charade of an election to maintain their illegal reign.

Update 2 September: Captured soldiers names released

PTE Timothy John Anthony
PTE Apisalome Rokotakala Waqa Balawakula 
PTE Mosese Bevu 
PTE Kasimiro Bose LCPL George Rodney Burt
SGT Viliame Cavubati 
PTE James Danford 
CPL Sakiusa Kamikamica 
PTE Talaiyasi Koro 
LCPL Josefa Lewenilovo 
PTE Nemani Matevakaloloma 
PTE Apenisa Muavesi 
LCPL Waisea Nabotiloma 
PTE Orisi Nasomia Naio 
LCPL Josefa Naivola
WO2 Marika Nakicobula
Capt Simione Qionibaravilala
Capt Savenaca Siwatibau
CPL Nasi Vilani Racaca
LCPL Sanaila Radevo
PTE Semi Radrodro
PTE Tevita Kaloulasulasu Rakabu
PTE Manasa Rasalato
PTE Atanio Vereti Ratucoko
PTE Panapasa June Ravai
CPL Paula Ravuso
CPL Tevita Madakiliva Rokobuli
PTE Aminisitai Rokoli
CPL Niumaia Romala
PTE Petero Samuela
PTE Severo Saqacala
PTE Jemesa Saqamaitoga
PTE Sevuloni Busa Duikete Sereinagata
PTE Ratu Emori Tunaosara Tagivakatini
PTE Maika Takavesi
PTE Eparama Tamanivakabuta
CPL Manasa Leone Taraki
PTE Jowasa Togavou
CPO Laitia Usa
PTE Ratu Emosi B Ranatawake
PTE Mosese Lekanagata Vatanitawake
PTE Iosefo Iferemi Vilolo
PTE Asaeli Ratusema
PTE Jone Wainiqolo
AB Ilitomasi Nawalu Waqavonovono 

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Intel sources confirm picture of captured Fiji soldiers

Fiji peacekeepers appear unharmed but it's not known where they are.

Inside sources have verified the picture reported to be that of the captured Fiji soldiers and reportedly tweeted this morning by the rebels who are holding them, is genuine.

Al Nusra, which is linked to Al Qaeda, today also tweeted the ID cards of the 45 Fiji peacekeepers.

The new information comes as the U.N.confirms it doesn't know where the captured Fiji peacekeepers are.

Thirty two Filipino soldiers have, however, been rescued. Other personnel remain trapped.

Media reports, including one from Al Jazeera's Jacky Rowland, say there have been no news on the fate of the Fiji contingent.

"Up until now the UN have been relying on negotiations to tray and get the Fijians out, but as it seems, the troops from the Phillipines were released as a result of military action."

Frank Bainimarama continues to be silent on the capture but the Ministry of Information today posted a video of RFMF commander, Mosese Tikoitoga, admitting they have no idea where the men but believe they are unharmed.

Intel sources say the RFMF won't admit it but the big fear is  Al Nusra will use the Fiji troops as human shields.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Bainimarama quiet on capture of Fiji soldiers as nation asked to pray

Unconfirmed: This photo is reportedly that of the captured 44 soldiers and has been posted on Facebook with the information it was tweeted by Al Qaeda. We are checking further about the claim.

Prayers are going out to the 43 Fiji soldiers captured by rebels in Syria but the hostage situation was always a possibility.

182 soldiers left with fanfare in July last year with the military commander at the time, Frank Bainimarama, rashly promising to despatch as many as 500 men to help the UN. 

He noted the soldiers could be going to their death but couched it in language that gloried war: "Etched on their faces was the pride, the determination and commitment that we are certain will carry them for the mission ahead."

Concerns for the safety of the men were raised via this blog but the peacekeeping post was too much of a show of strength for Bainimarama to ignore.
Fiji soldiers farewell families last year

Forty three lives are now at risk although RFMF commander, Mosese Tikoitoga, says he's been informed the soldiers are unharmed. Tikoitoga admits, though, he hasn't been able to contact the men directly and has called on the  nation to pray for the soldiers.

C4.5 wishes for the safe return of the men but as the country holds its breath praying for their safety, it must be noted with all due respect to the fat belly army of Fiji – they were not captured.

Filipino soldiers stood their ground
Consistent in the reports coming out of Golan Heights is this: the Fiji soldiers surrendered their weapons at first sight and were then taken hostage, unlike the 38 Filipino soldiers who stood their ground and fought the rebels.

The top brass in Fiji are to blame for sending to a combat zone the soldiers in lieu of money without proper training and weapons, including protective gear.

The Fiji public must be aware that Golan Heights is not a UN peacekeeping mission but an active combat zone – this means if you are fired upon you are to engage and kill.

So much then for the army who find it easy to oppress its own unarmed citizens: they surrendered at the first sight of 150 Muslims believed to be the Al Nusra group. 

The military in the Phillipines meanwhile says it is in direct contact with its soldiers.

A spokesperson says an English-speaking Fijian soldier had been sent by rebels to tell the Filipinos to give up their weapons but the Filipinos stood their ground.

“Our soldiers are prepared, trained and capable of dealing with this situation and will take risks to fulfil our commitment to international security and peace.

“The peace contingent has the right to defend its position and the units in line with United Nationals protocols and rules of engagement.”

No word as of yet from Bainimarama, who coincidentally didn't fly out with the Golan Heights soldiers last year in a show of moral support. He was instead welcoming a delegation from Russia.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Nawaikula tackles issue of land

Land continues to be a crucial election issue, despite claims by the regime itaukei's concerns are misplaced.

SODELPA candidate, Niko Nawaikula, discusses here the affects of the illegal government's Decrees and Constitution on the indigenous people of Fiji and their rights to their land.

Nawaikula, a qualified lawyer, has specialized in laws related to native land and indigenous issues.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Questions amnesiac journos should be asking

A Manual for Journalists taking up Khaiyum’s challenge
By Professor Wadan Narsey 

There continues a pretense of national debates between Fiji First Party representatives and other party representatives, in which allegedly independent journalists from Fiji Sun, FBC and Fiji TV energetically grill opposition political party leaders and candidates, while sympathetically allowing Fiji First leaders all the leeway they want.

The latest was a one-sided grilling of Mr Mahendra Chaudhry by Ms Shammi Lochan, the latest bright spark for the Aina program, a worthy successor to Veena Bhatnagar who ruthlessly, but smoothly and suavely, previously grilled Professor Biman Prasad in a totally one-sided affair (she will go far in politics).
Two allegedly neutral media personalities, Matai Akauola and Veena Bhatnagar revealed their true colors by standing as candidates for Fiji First Party.
Journalists seem not to be aware that Aiyaz Khaiyum (Attorney General and also Minister for Elections has publicly instructed them, nay exhorted them,  to beyond the “he says this and he says that” type of superficial journalism, and ask more penetrating analytic questions.
It seems that our journalists suffer strange memory losses and get stuck for questions on their programs, with none willing to emulate the tenaciousness of a certain Riyaz Sayed Khaiyum who did a hilarious but penetrating interview with Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka, while both were trotting along the sea wall opposite the Pony Club in Laucala Bay. (It would seem that Riyaz is playing a somewhat opposite role these days, to people in power).

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Coward Bainimarama avoids protesters as election officials change rules again

People power: Bainimarama only met 'supporters.'
The headline was "Dad's cry for justice" but it might as well have been "Fiji's cry for justice."

And chances are it won't be the last time we see it.

Fronting up: But where's the dictator?
Twenty something days out from the elections and the regime is still playing dirty. 

The Supervisor of Elections, Mohammed Saneem, today went ahead with the draw to allocate numbers to the parties, despite the Electoral
Bodyguards - about 30 plus police!
Commission disqualifying two candidates - Aiyaz Sayed Khaiyum and Mere Vuniwaqa.

The National Federation Party had objected to Khaiyum and Vuniwaqa: one is Fiji First's general secretary as well as Minister Responsible for Elections and the country's illegal attorney general, the other former Acting Permanent Secretary for Justice.

Under the regime's own Constitution, neither are eligible to seek election for four years because of their involvement in organising next month's election.

And yet Saneem, kin of Khaiyum, today proceeded with the draw claiming the Commission had failed to deliberate in the required three days and saying he had sought the advice of the solicitor general's office.

The Commission has disputed the ruling, boycotted the draw and is seeking legal advice from New Zealand.