Australian Minister for International Development and the Pacific, Zed Seselja has thanked Fiji for the robust and principled international position on Russia’s unjustified invasion of Ukraine.
Seselja also acknowledges the collective position of the Pacific Islands Forum in response to this crisis, during the opening of the Blackrock facility in Nadi, Monday.
“The challenges to the rules‑based international order have been brought into stark relief in Ukraine. I want to thank Fiji for its robust and principled international position on Russia’s unjustified invasion of Ukraine, and I acknowledge the collective position of the Pacific Islands Forum in response to this crisis.
“In our own region, the coercion, disinformation and foreign interference are [indistinct]. None of us here today wish to see the region undermined or destabilised.
“Last week, we committed to increasing our Defence Force personnel by 30 per cent, bolstering our numbers to 101,000 personnel by 2040, and this is why Australia is working with Fiji and other Pacific partners to build sovereign resilience and support the rule of law in our region through collaboration on humanitarian responses, through coordination on international diplomacy and protection of human rights and through military-to-military cooperation such as the facility we are launching today,” said Seselja.
Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama also reaffirmed Fiji’s opposition to Russia’s war on Ukraine.
“At this milestone moment for Fijian peacekeeping, I re-affirm Fiji’s opposition to Russia’s war on Ukraine.
The Pacific was united in condemning the invasion at the floor of the UN General Assembly. We remain absolute in our call to end the conflict and a return to diplomacy,” said Bainimarama.
SOURCE: FBC NEWS/PACNEWS