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Consignment of Russian military aid arrives in Suva

A shipment of military arms and equipment arrived in the country yesterday, with authorities confirming the armaments were earmarked for peacekeeping purposes. According the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF), the shipment contained ‘small arms’ and two ‘mobile mechanical workshops’. RFMF Acting Commander, Rear-Admiral Viliame Naupoto told Fiji Sun: I can confirm to you now that small arms […]

Calvin Prasad

January 15, 2016 8:29 am

A shipment of military arms and equipment arrived in the country yesterday, with authorities confirming the armaments were earmarked for peacekeeping purposes.

The shipment of military arms and equipment arrived aboard the St Confidence currently berthed at Suva’s Kings Wharf at 7am yesterday. Photo: Marine Traffic.

According the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF), the shipment contained ‘small arms’ and two ‘mobile mechanical workshops’.

RFMF Acting Commander, Rear-Admiral Viliame Naupoto told Fiji Sun:

I can confirm to you now that small arms from Russia have arrived into the country and are at Queen Elizebath Barracks in Nabua.

I must thank the Government of Russia for the timely donation.

Rear-Admiral Naupoto added the shipment would be inspected by customs officers today.

Police downplayed claims by Opposition that police were barred from inspecting the shipment

Acting Police Commissioner, Brigadier General Sitiveni Qiliho told Fiji Times:

We were part of the planning and reception of the shipment.

Opposition Whip and spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Ratu Isoa Tikoca had earlier released a statement claiming the consignment included 20 containers of arms, trucks and a helicopter.  He claimed police were barred from off-loading the containers, and a private security firm was handed operational control of the shipment.

Rear-Admiral Naupoto strongly refuted the statement, adding:

I need to set things straight.  Don’t believe in Facebook postings.

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