23 Jan 2012

Kiribati leader urges release of climate adaptation funds

7:09 am on 23 January 2012

The newly-elected president of Kiribati, says the international community is making progress, but countries vulnerable to climate change need adaptation funds as soon as possible.

Anote Tong beat two candidates to win his third and final term leading the country.

He says he is advocating to the international community that it has a responsibility to vulnerable countries.

Mr Tong says he has seen progress, but it is very gradual.

"Sometimes we focus too much on our own individual economic agenda and forget about the human values that are fundamental to humanity. So I hope at some point, in the very near future, that we will realise that we do have a responsibility as human beings to address the challenges of the around us for whom we have caused the problem."

Anote Tong says he will continue to work through multi-lateral organisations like the UN and the Pacific Islands Forum because no one country can solve the problem.