16 May 2014

Papuan separatists hail new Vanuatu leader

2:57 pm on 16 May 2014

The West Papua Coalition for Liberation says the new Vanuatu Prime Minister Joe Natuman will continue the good work of his predecessor in supporting the West Papuan self-determination cause.

Mr Natuman has replaced Moana Carcasses who was yesterday removed in a parliamentary vote of no-confidence.

During his 13 and a half months as Prime Minister, Mr Carcasses took significant steps to advance the West Papua cause in international fora and raise issues over human rights abuses by Indonesia's security forces.

This included a landmark speech at the United Nations general assembly.

The Coalition for Liberation says Joe Natuman is very much a supporter of West Papuan rights and was instrumental in the former government's policy.

The Coalition has also played down concerns that the new Foreign Minister Sato Kilman could try and strengthen ties with Indonesia again as he did previously when Prime Minister.