Andrew J. Wein - Sep 26, 2011

The media are suspected of covering up recent cases of foreign tourists being murdered in Fiji in order not to tarnish the nation’s image in front of the rest of the world.

Murders in Fiji with foreign victims are just like murders of foreign nationals elsewhere, with only one major exception: the way the media has covered them up. According to overseas media, cases of beatings have been put down to natural causes and Fiji has failed to react responsibly in such incidents in order to keep the reputation of the nation intact. The problem is that such tactics may very well backfire and a nation of secrecy is often perceived as an unsafe one.

Tony Groom, a New Zealander, was badly beaten up and died as a result of the injuries. However, no post mortem was carried out officially and details of this case were kept away from foreign eyes and ears. The reason is clear in that Fiji has, in recent years, experienced growing numbers of visitors from New Zealand and Australia.

Indeed, growth has reached even 5% making great inroads into the amount of revenue. For this reason, the murders of a Japanese woman and an American businessman have been kept quiet in recent months, reported foreign media watch organizations.

Fiji is a more and more popular destination for many nations in the Pacific area. However, the afore-mentioned murders and violent crime account do not help the tourism at all; also problems with high levels of HIV are prominent.

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