Opposition parties want full disclosure on Chinese operation

Questions remained on the arrest and deportation of Asian nationals on a Chinese chartered flight last Friday.

Calvin Prasad

August 7, 2017 6:24 pm

The Chinese Ministry of Public Security had announced on Saturday that a joint operation with the Fiji Police Force resulted in 77 suspected scammers being repatriated from Fiji to China.

The Fiji Police Force has still not commented on the case.

The Leader of the Opposition, Ro Teimumu Kepa said the events created unease and risked Fiji becoming a haven for mischief makers.

Ro Teimumu accused the Government of withholding information on the risks that were involved with the event.

“The incident makes us revive our call to screen all those who enter Fiji. There is a great need for a better-equipped border security system. We cannot afford to expose our people and our fragile economy to such risks”.

The Opposition Leader asked the Government to make a statement on the issue.

National Federation Party Leader, Biman Prasad said the repatriation of the Chinese citizens was “unprecedented and has never occurred under the watch of any Government.”

“The supervised repatriation of such a large number of Chinese people from Fiji on a chartered China Southern Airlines plane, with an even greater number of Chinese security personnel to escort them back to China, has made international headlines, yet here in Fiji we have not heard a single word from this Government.”

The permanent secretary at the Prime Minister’s Office, Yogesh Karan, yesterday confirmed to Fiji Times that the group was deported on a special flight arranged by the Chinese embassy in Suva.

“What has happened is on the basis which the visas were given, we have some checking done on them, and we found that they were violating their visa conditions.”

Mr Karan added that the Government “declared that they need to be sent back.”

People took to social media to question the circumstances surrounding the events.

“People arrested in Fiji have legal rights, before Fiji courts. How do the Chinese police just bypass these?” asked a Suva-based lawyer.

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