18th February 10:19 PM
Fiji is always there to assist Australia and we know we can expect the same from them - Seruiratu
By Priteshni Nand
Sunday 19/01/2020

Minister for Defence and National Security, Inia Seruiratu says Fiji will always be there for Australia when they need us and we know we can expect that same level of commitment in return.

While farewelling the 54 officers from the Republic of Fiji Military Forces yesterday, Seruiratu says this deployment fulfils the highest aim of Fiji “vuvale” partnership with Australia as a family means helping each other in times of need.

He says the prayers of the Fijian people have been with our friends in Australia from the moment the bushfire crisis ignited across New South Wales.

Seruiratu says as Oceania is suffering a new and frightening range of climate-induced disasters, Fiji stands prepared to confront this challenge alongside Australia and all of our Pacific partners by continuing to advocate on the world stage to address the underlying causes of our changing climate.

Seruiratu says while some officers have left to assist our Australian brothers and sisters  other RFMF personnel are also acting across the country to respond to the impacts of Tropical Cyclone Tino on Fijians.

He says this speaks to the capacity of the Force and the strength of the Fijian spirit that even when Fiji is confronting a crisis of our own, we are still willing and able to assist Australia in its time of need.

The Minister thanked the families of each RFMF officer that left for Australia yesterday.

He says the Fijian and Australian people share a proud and enduring friendship and one of those pillars of collaboration is through Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief.

He says Fiji and Australia have cooperated in the past on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief matters of which one of the major one is the aftermath of Tropical Cyclone Winston in 2016 when Australia were the first one to take action, provide relief supplies and life-saving assistance and also reached to ill and injured Fijians in more isolated regions impacted by the storm.

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