13 Aug 2008

NZ Pacific Islands affairs minister to attend Urwin funeral

4:00 pm on 13 August 2008

New Zealand's Pacific Island Affairs Minister, Luamanuvao Winnie Laban, will represent New Zealand at the funeral for the former Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General, Greg Irwin, in Apia on Thursday.

Luamanavao says Mr Urwin made a tremendous contribution in advancing Pacific regionalism throughout a distinguished diplomatic career.

She says his funeral will also be an occasion to pay tribute to a significant legacy and she says it will be a great honour to extend New Zealand's condolences to a person who played such a positive role in the region.

Luamanvao says Mr Urwin had an innate understanding of the Pacific and the rich tapestry of cultures that are represented within it.