22 Nov 2004

Vanuatu Opposition call for Parliament to debate Taiwan diplomatic link offer

9:28 pm on 22 November 2004

The spat in Vanuatu over its One China policy will be debated in Parliament tomorrow at the request of the Opposition.

The Cabinet has twice rejected the plan of the Prime Minister, Serge Vohor, to open diplomatic ties with Taiwan.

The Opposition leader, Sato Kilman, says despite the Cabinet ruling, the Prime Minister has allowed the Meridien Hotel in Port Vila to fly the Taiwanese flag - a move which he calls an intrusion into the sovereignty of Vanuatu.

He says this is different from the normal circumstance of a hotel flying the flags of the countries of origin of its guests.

"Different in the sense that it was flown on the basis of these diplomatic ties with Taiwan, and it went one step further with the Prime Minister, after agreeing with the Cabinet on Thursday, on Friday the Prime Minister instructed that the flag be flown."

Sato Kilman.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister's spokesman, Kal Moli, says he believes the Parliamentary debate will garner support for the Taiwan plan.