I spent some of this week in Fiji so it is the focus of this week's links:

  • Australia will co-lead a 14-country international observer mission to Fiji for the elections on 17 September. The Australian delegation will be led by Peter Reith.
  • Grant Bayldon of Amnesty International (NZ) looks at what is needed to support true democracy over and above holding elections in September.
  • The Fiji First party has been campaigning in New Zealand where they have had a mixed reception. When asked for assurance that there would be no more coups, Bainimarama's laughing response was 'You vote me into Parliament and there will be no coup'.
  • The interim prime minister will also visit Australia, where approximately 4000 Fijians have registered to vote in next month's elections. His visit is expected to prompt protests.
  • Current polling shows that Bainimarama enjoys 60% support as preferred prime minister but this is a 6% drop since May.
  • Away from politics, Fiji is preparing to welcome home a favoured son, golfer Vijay Singh, along with other big names who will take part in the first international tour event to be held in the country.
  • This coming weekend will see the celebration of the Hibiscus festival. More than just a beauty pageant, this year's theme is the impact of climate change: