11 Jan 2010

Clinton visit a snub to most Pacific leaders, says Faleomavaega

6:50 pm on 11 January 2010

The American Samoa member of the US Congress, Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin, has welcomed US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's visit to the Pacific but has expressed his disappointment that many Pacific island nations are being ignored and again marginalised.

During her first visit to the Pacific region this week, she will visit Australia, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea.

Faleomavaega says Mrs Clinton is excluding some 15 Pacific leaders who could have gathered in one location to meet her.

He says in fairness to her, this is nothing new as the Bush and Clinton administrations also disregarded the needs and concerns of Pacific Island nations, as have most US administrations.

Faleomavaega says President Barack Obama or Mrs Clinton could have easily called for a summit of foreign ministers from the island nations to meet in Samoa, Hawaii or New Zealand.