29 Aug 2013

Tahiti's Temaru drops Forum travel plan

10:44 am on 29 August 2013

French Polynesia's pro-independence opposition politician, Oscar Temaru, has reversed his decision to go to next week's Pacific Islands Forum meeting in the Marshall Islands.

He had planned to go to Majuro to highlight the court convictions of the French Polynesian president, Gaston Flosse.

Mr Flosse was given two lengthy jail sentences for corruption this year, but none of the convictions is final as his lawyers have lodged appeals in both Papeete and Paris.

Mr Temaru has told local radio that Mr Flosse is no longer asking Pacific Island countries to withdraw the territory from the UN decolonisation list.

He says he doesn't care if Mr Flosse wants to tell these countries about his vision of remaining with France.

Yesterday, the assembly passed a resolution to be presented to the Forum, asking Pacific leaders to refrain from supporting any outside action that goes against the will of French Polynesia's population.

In May, the UN reinscribed French Polynesia on the decolonisation list shortly before Mr Flosse's anti-independence party formed a new government.