Island declares emergency rule

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The Independent Online

The tiny South Pacific nation of Tuvalu has declared emergency rule after protesters marched in the capital to demand the resignation of the finance minister.

The emergency was declared to prevent moves to destabilise the government, Communications Minister Kausea Natano said.

The one naval patrol boat owned by the island nation of about 12,000 was guarding the coastline near the homes of Governor General Iakopa Itaeli Taeia and Prime Minister Willy Telavi, while police guarded the two compounds on the main island of Funafuti, which is also the capital.

The protest attracted about 50 people who marched around the main island, carrying placards. Emergency rule will now limit meetings to no more than 10 people