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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

USP clears the air on regional students' safety in Fiji

The University of the South Pacific's Vice Chancellor, Professor Anthony Tarr has confirmed that informal talks is taking place between the university and other member countries on the political situation in Fiji.

In a statement yesterday, Professor Tarr said USP maintained its high standards as a premier institution in learning but was not responsible for the safety aspect of its international students in Fiji.

"We have a few students from outside the region but we do assure international students that we do not hold concerns for their safety," Professor Tarr said.

International students are those who are not citizens of the 12 Pacific Island member countries that jointly owned USP. The twelve member countries of USP include Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Samoa.

Professor Tarr added that he had talks with member countries concerning the political climate, but this would in no way affect the beginning of the new school semester at USP which should commence on February 26. "There were some concerns expressed but it seems that all 12 countries who belong to the USP Family would send their students," Tarr said.

He said about 22,000 students from the Pacific as well as some international students have enrolled for the first semester of this academic year.

Source: Fiji Times

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