27 Jun 2013

Fiji minister says Papua criticism unfair

4:39 am on 27 June 2013

Fiji's foreign minister, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, says criticism of him by the West Papua National Coalition for Liberation is unfair.

The group was dismissive over Ratu Inoke's claim that it wasn't representative of Indonesia's West Papuans, who have unsuccessfully asked the Melanesian Spearhead Group to be made a member.

But Ratu Inoke has told Fijilive that the criticism is especially unfair given the effort Fiji has made to raise the West Papua issue in the MSG.

At last week's MSG summit, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and New Caledonia's FLNKS Movement backed the West Papuans' bid but Fiji and Papua New Guinea have rejected it.

Ratu Inoke says before making a decision, the MSG leaders will need to analyse the precise situation.

The MSG accepted a bid by Indonesia two years ago to become an MSG observer.