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Fiji Time: 4:08 AM on Friday 25 April

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Tonga to host interim PM

Thursday, September 13, 2007

INTERIM Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama says he will attend the Forum Leaders meeting in Tonga next month.

Despite warnings from Australia and New Zealand that he will be isolated at the meeting, Commodore Bainimarama said the two countries' opinion on his presence at the meeting did not make any difference to him.

Speaking in Fijian, he said the important thing was that he would be at the meeting.

He said there was no need to take into account recent comments made by New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark and her Foreign Affairs Minister, Winston Peters on the issue.

The Forum Leaders meeting will be on October 16-17 in Tonga.

There have been several unsuccessful attempts by Ms Clark to lobby for Commodore Bainimarama's exclusion from the meeting.

The Tongan Government has said all leaders were welcome and were invited "without discrimination".