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Fiji coup leader declares state of emergency: reports.

JAKARTA, Dec. 6 Kyodo

Fiji's military leader, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, declared a state of emergency in the country Wednesday, one day after seizing power in a bloodless coup, according to reports from Fiji's capital, Suva.

Fiji's Legend radio network quoted a military statement as saying armed forces would set up a cordon of checkpoints around the capital as part of the emergency, the Associated Press reported.

Australia's Sydney Morning Herald quoted Bainimarama as saying he was considering imposing a national curfew and had marched 3,000 extra reserve troops into Suva to maintain order.

In Tuesday's coup, the fourth in 20 years in the South Pacific island country, Bainimarama removed the elected government of Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase.

He had threatened to replace Qarase's government if it failed to comply with his demands, which include the scrapping of a bill that would forgive those involved in staging the 2000 coup. Bainimarama ended that mutiny.

Qarase flew out of Suva on Wednesday to his home island in the isolated Lau group, the Australian daily reported on its website.

With the removal of Qarase, soldiers began rounding up top officials of the overthrown administration, the newspaper said.
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Publication:Asian Political News
Date:Dec 11, 2006
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