27 Jun 2007

Guam indigenous movement denies it is undermining self-determination bid

3:41 pm on 27 June 2007

A group representing Guam's indigenous people has dismissed claims that it's representations to the United Nations are distracting from the US territory's bid for self-determination.

Representatives from the group, Nation Chamorro, and other activists appeared before the UN Committee on Decolonisation last week pushing for the US to address Guam's self-determination aspirations.

However, Guam's Commission on Decolonisation has criticised the delegation for acting on its own in the bid for self-determination.

The Commission says a concerted and unified effort is needed to advance the cause.

But Nation Chamorro's Debbie Quinata says they have a mandate to drive the bid, especially since the Commission is under the purview of the Government which is controlled by the US.

"If we are to wait for everybody to co-ordinate and collaborate, we will cease to exist as a people. We are the people of this island and I think that each and every one of us has an obligation to do everything within our power to get our concerns addressed in any manner that we possibly can."

Debbie Quinata says the US refusal to address this issue remains the biggest obstacle to self-determination.