9 Sep 2011

Forum dismisses French territories' cases

9:34 am on 9 September 2011

There has been a negative outcome for France's territories at the Pacific Islands Forum.

The leaders ignored a bid by New Caledonia to upgrade its membership status from associate member to full member.

The bid was first made in 2003 by the then French president, Jacques Chirac, which led, in a first step, to the Forum creating a new membership category for New Caledonia and French Polynesia.

The Forum leaders in Auckland also rejected, for a fifth time in seven years, a bid by French Polynesia to support its campaign to be reinscribed on the UN decolonisation list.

The new Forum chair, John Key of New Zealand, objected despite saying that he obviously supports countries having the right to self-determination.

Mr Key is quoted as saying he is sure French Polynesia's Oscar Temaru will be back at teh Forum next year.

Tahitipresse says Mr Key's stance has assured New Zealand of France's support for Wellington's bid to get a UN Security Council seat in 2015.