Democracy for Nauru now

Murray McCully must send the strongest possible message to the Nauruan Government that New Zealand does not condone its actions given the disturbing developments there, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says.

“Right now we are seeing Nauru stripped of its basic human rights and freedoms. It’s our responsibility to stand up for democracy and human rights in our region. 

“The Nauru government has not only sacked the Magistrate and Chief Justice, removing the rule of law, but five opposition MPs have been suspended from Parliament, leaving many Nauruans without political representation.

"Their passports have been confiscated in retaliation for a normal political protest and three have subsequently been arrested.

"A $7,000 fee has been imposed on journalist visas to Nauru - restricting press freedom. This amounts to the systematic dismantling of a previously democratic system.

“Australia is closest to Nauru, but is compromised by its policy of paying Nauru to detain its boat people in camps.

“New Zealand has a proud tradition of speaking up when it counts. Murray McCully needs to take urgent action, working with the South Pacific Forum and other Commonwealth countries. 

“It’s time for him to show some leadership, speak up, and help restore democracy and the rule of law to Nauru,” David Shearer says.