Weapons Export Ban|Against Fiji Lifted

     WASHINGTON (CN) – The United States may resume exporting weapons to the Republic of Fiji, as the State Department lifted the ban on Friday.
     The department amended the International Traffic in Arms Regulations to allow export of “defense articles and defense services,” without public input. Notice and comment, the usual approach to amending regulations, does not apply here because “controlling the import and export of defense articles and services is a foreign affairs function,” according to State.
     “The department also finds that, given the national security issues surrounding U.S. policy toward Fiji, notice and public procedure on this rule would be impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.”
     Export was cut off when a 2006 coup ejected what the United States considered a democratically elected government.
     A leader was elected Sept. 17, 2014, in a “credible” election, according to the amendment. The elected leader is the same man who staged the 2006 coup.
     The United States lifted sanctions in October. Lifting the weapons ban will normalize relations further.
     “The department has determined that it is in the best interests of U.S. foreign policy, national security, and human rights concerns” to end the ban, the amendment states.
     The rule became effective May 29, 2015.

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