Reports that Taliban recruiting in Fiji denied

Fijians were recently recruited by the Taliban says Federal Administered Tribal Areas Research Centre‘s director administration and research Mansur Khan Mehsud.

He was speaking to the Fiji Times from Islamabad in Pakistan.

Mehsud says that foreigners are coming from a more diverse number of countries than in years past.

“A few months ago, we even welcomed some (two or three) people from Fiji for the first time!” says a Taliban member who spoke with AFP.

He told the Fiji Times that reports of Fijians being recruited by the Taliban was news all over Pakistan.  

The Fiji Moslem league is not aware of any such association or links and they seriously doubted the credibility of such a claim, says Hafizud Dean Khan, the League’s President.

“Muslims in Fiji have no reason to be oppressed as our country has allowed peaceful existence for all faiths,” he said.

He also outlined that the League had not sent students to study in madrasas in Pakistan but some people went on their own. “We have our own educational institutions in Fiji,” Mr Khan added.

Police spokesman Inspector Atunaisa Sokomuri said police had information long before the revelation in overseas and local media last Friday.

“It has been there for some time. We already had information long before that,” he said, referring to the media reports.

Sokomuri said  that local police had sought the assistance of International Criminal Police Organisation (INTERPOL) on the matter.

“We have received the report through our sources. We are investigating through our channels overseas,” he had said.

Fiji is home to 53,000 Muslims, mainly of Indian origin. Most Fiji Muslims are of the orthodox Sunni branch with a small number of Ahmadiyya Muslims.

The majority of New Zealand’s 36,000 Muslims are from Fiji.


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