Tonga's king dissolves parliament and orders new elections

The king of the small Pacific nation of Tonga has taken the extraordinary step of dissolving the nation's parliament and ordering new elections.

King Tupou VI ordered a new election be held by November 16 in a dissolution notice that was posted Friday on the attorney general's website.

The action means the end of the government led by Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva. His term was due to end next year.

The former schoolteacher is a longtime democracy activist and was first elected to the parliament in 1987. Since becoming leader in 2014, his effectiveness has been questioned and he survived a no-confidence vote earlier this year.

Tonga is an archipelago located between New Zealand and Hawaii and is home to about 100,000 people.