Pacific Forum leaders apologize to Micronesia after leadership split

After Micronesia withdrew from the regional peak agency, the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF), in February over the election of a new secretary-general from the Cook Islands, leaders from several Pacific island nations gathered to repair the fence. I did.

A political dialogue mechanism called Forum Troika Plus was established in March to facilitate candid and candid discussions among post-split Pacific leaders, but Micronesian leaders suggest there is a way to go. doing.

Leaders in Papua New Guinea, Tuvalu, Nauru, Fiji and Samoa apologized to Micronesia and strongly accused PIF of not choosing Gerald Zackios, a consensus candidate to serve as US ambassador to the Marshall Islands in February.

Forum Chair Tuvalu Prime Minister Kausea Natano welcome Dialogue that PIF had the opportunity to express regret and apologize for “the current situation facing the forum family.”

“There are still issues to be addressed, but I say that the Pacific Islands Forum’s political leadership will work together to ensure and protect regional unity, taking into account the significant challenges in front of us all. I’m moved by the commitment, “Natano said.

Fiji’s Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama apologized to the “Brothers of Micronesia” in his speech. Fiji was suspended from PIF in 2009.

Micronesian leader Welcomed the apology Narua President Reynold Enimere said the leader’s comments “resonate deep in my heart.”

“Leadership was shown at such times, showing to the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, the Prime Minister of Samoa, and the Prime Minister of Fiji that you are a capable leader. Wise leaders, words like this here. He brought it to me, “said Enimea.

David Panuelo, President of the Federated States of Micronesia, Thank you Leaders expressed their heartfelt apologies, and although Micronesia has not yet returned to PIF, “the progress is very positive,” he told ABC Radio.

“We’re still in the same position, but the dialogue is going on, so I think we’ll have a more detailed review in May,” he said.

Panuelo responded to the more realistic President Paluan Slanger Whips Jr. about the apology.

Whips said Island Times Parua Micronesia welcomed the apology, but the subregions will continue to stick to the decision to leave the community.

President Paluan believes that the only correct remedy is for the newly elected Henry Puna to step down as general secretary and for Micronesia’s priority candidate Gerald Zackios to play that role.

“That’s what I want, and we’re moving in that direction. If you have Micronesia, you have Puna, if you have Puna, you have Micronesia. “Mr. Whips said.

President Paluan previously Opinion piece For the Guardian he believes Henry Puna’s election was influenced by Beijing.

“There is a question to answer about the role of external influence in the decisions made by the Pacific,” Whips wrote, citing China’s growing influence in the region.

“Did the relationship between the Marshall Islands and Taiwan hurt the candidates in the South Pacific? Was there a relationship between Ambassador Zackios and Washington?” He wrote.

Many Polynesian countries in the Pacific now turn their backs on diplomatic relations with Taiwan and support cash injections, which they believe come from China and the Belt and Road Initiative.

Over the past two years, Taiwan has weakened diplomatic relations in the region, leaving only the states of Parua, Nauru, Tuvalu and Marshall Islands after Solomon Islands and Kiribati. switching Loyalty to China to access the Belt and Road Initiative in 2019.

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