Call for re-inscription of Tahiti Nui on decolonisation list

French Polynesia is not a Pacific Forum member but an associate member and so President Oscar Temaru was not able to participate in all Forum discussions. However he was able to attend the Polynesian leaders’ meeting.

He wanted to raise the issue of sovereignty for French Polynesia. “Getting my country back on the list is the first step.”

His move to be included on the decolonisation list is opposed by France and Australia and New Zealand.

Temaru suggested Australia and New Zealand should abstain rather than oppose the territory’s petition to be re-inscribed on the United Nations decolonisation list.

Last year the Pacific Conference of Churches called for the re-inscription of French Polynesia/Tahiti Nui on the UN decolonisation committee’s list.

The Pacific Forum leaders had issued a communique recalling their 2004 decision to support the principle of French Polynesia’s right to self-determination. They reiterated their encouragement to French Polynesia and France to seek an agreed approach on how to realize French Polynesia’s right to self-determination.

However the PCC said the communique was vague and asked the Pacific Forum leaders to be clear about their stand on Maohi Nui’s bid for re-inscription on the United Nations decolonisation committee’s list.

“They should clearly state that they support the re-inscription of Maohi Nui and this should be noted in the communique,” said Reverend Francois Pihaate, Acting General Secretary of the PCC.

“For too long Tahiti Nui has been fighting for her freedom and it’s time, we, as a Pacific family stand up with a united voice to offer our support,” he said.

Reverend Francois commended the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) in making a clear stand on the matter. A resolution passed at the recent meeting in Nadi, Fiji, stated that the MSG “Supported the re-inscription of French Polynesia/Tahiti Nui on the UN decolonisation committee’s list as the first step in the process of self-determination, at international level.”

“The Forum Leaders need to take heed of the resolution passed by the MSG Leaders and follow suit. They should not try to ‘play it safe’ by dodging the real issue and trying to cover up by inscribing words of encouragement on the communique, because this brushes aside the human rights struggles of the people of Maohi Nui,” said Reverend Francois.

“During the recent Pacific Church Leaders meeting in Samoa a declaration was passed in support of Tahiti Nui’s plight. The Church Leaders’ Declaration said : “We have listened to the cry of the people of Maohi Nui, of their desire for freedom. We have discerned as Church Leaders and we hear the cry of God within the plea of the people of Maohi Nui. We have heard the appeal by the President of Maohi Nui, His Excellency Oscar Temaru, for the support of churches for the re-inscription of Maohi Nui in the United Nations Decolonisation Committee of 24 list.”

“In this regard, we make the following pledges:

  • We endorse the request of His Excellency Temaru to assist his lobby for the re-inscription of Maohi Nui in the United Nations Decolonisation List.
  • Further, we pledge our support, individually as churches and as members of PCC, to do all that is within our means to help Maohi Nui attain political freedom.
  • We welcome the World Council of Churches commitment to advocate for Maohi Nui’s re-inscription in the Decolonisation List of the United Nations.”

Source

News category: Asia Pacific.

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