‘Persona Non Grata’ – book on Fiji and NZ’s bond to release next month

A book titled ‘Persona Non Grata: Breaking the Bond – New Zealand and Fiji 2004-2007’, written by (the late) Michael Green, NZ High Commissioner in Fiji will release on July 1, 2013.

According to the publisher: “This is the account by (the late) Michael Green, NZ High Commissioner in Fiji, of his years and role in Fiji until the surprising announcement of his change in diplomatic status to “Persona Non Grata” (unwelcome person) in 2007, a status that prevented any further diplomatic activities or role for him in that country.

On his return to New Zealand Michael Green felt compelled to write an account of his time in these islands with which New Zealand, along with Australia and the United Kingdom, has had very close links and considerable influence over a long period.

His tour of duty coincided with internal political shifts in Fiji’s politics that would lead to the 2006 military coup that established Commodore Frank Bainimarama as unelected leader/interim president of these Pacific islands – a position he still holds six years on. New Zealand has since this time had to watch events unfold from a distance, having taken the necessary stance of severing diplomatic relations with Fiji.

Long-supplied aid, trade, and most importantly the provision of educational expertise – always New Zealand’s greatest contribution to those islands – has since ceased, and with the now lengthy incumbency of Frank Bainimarama as Fiji’s military and political leader, New Zealand can but look on in the hope that democratic politics will eventually return to Fijian people.”

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