Sunday 24 Feb 2019 | 11:41 | SYDNEY
Sunday 24 Feb 2019 | 11:41 | SYDNEY

Pacific links: All eyes on PNG, Fiji takes UN post, a referendum for Vanuatu, and more



15 June 2016 17:33

  • The international response to the incident has been muted. Initial calls for calm and respect for peaceful protest and peaceful assembly from both the Australian government and the head of the United Nations have not been followed by condemnation of police action.
  • While calm has returned to Port Moresby the unrest has spread to the provinces over the weekend, with reported clashes in the highland cities of Goroka and Mt Hagen as well as in PNG’s second largest city Lae. It is still a very volatile situation.
  • Sean Dorney and Jenny Hayward-Jones  have both written for the Interpreter on the unrest.
  • Fiji’s ambassador to the UN, Peter Thomson, has been elected as president of the UN General Assembly, the first person from the Pacific islands to hold the positions. Meanwhile Fiji’s opposition warns continues to warn of Fiji’s decent towards a 'parliamentary dictatorship'.
  • Roy Mickey Joy, Vanuatu’s current Ambassador to Brussels and its preferred candidate to helm the Melanesian Spearhead Group, has stated that he is no longer interested in the position as it has become too politicised and has lost its integrity. 
  • Vanuatu's prime minister has promised that a series of proposed amendments to the constitution, which were postponed from being voted on in this sitting of Parliament, will be put to a referendum, after the opposition this week boycotted parliament in protest.
  • Nauru has backed down on its plan for a huge increase to nomination fees for new candidates in the upcoming elections to be held on 9 July.

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