24 Jul 2013

Tahiti Protestants welcome decolonisation opportunity

10:25 am on 24 July 2013

French Polynesia's Protestant Church has called on France to accept that the UN General Assembly has voted for the territory's reinscription on the UN decolonisation list.

The church is holding its synod in Tahiti, with its president, Taaroanui Marae, saying it wouldn't benefit France's image if it tried to undo the UN decision.

Paris objected to the UN voting on the issue and boycotted the sitting in May.

Mr Marae has told local radio that the reinscription will help the Maohi people defend its culture and heritage.

The French Polynesian government says it wants France to organise an independence referendum as soon as possible.

Paris is yet to formally respond to the request made by the territorial government.