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India 'saddened' by Fiji coup
December 05, 2006 18:26 IST
India on Tuesday said it was "saddened" by the toppling of Fiji's government by the military and hoped that power would be returned to the people at the earliest.
"We are saddened to learn about the turn of events in Fiji and hope the rule of law will prevail and power will be returned to the people at the earliest," External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Navtej Sarna told reporters in New Delhi.
Sarna said India greatly valued its relations with Fiji, a country with which it shared cultural and historical links.
The military in Fiji on Tuesday ousted the government and dismissed elected Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase.
Military commander Voreqe Bainimarama, who was locked in a standoff with Qarase, said he was suspending certain provisions of Fiji's constitution and taking over the role of the president.
Qarase also said an interim government would be appointed pending elections.