21 May 2015

American Samoa addresses UN decolonisation meeting

12:23 pm on 21 May 2015

American Samoa has told the United Nations it should remain on the UN's list of Non-Self Governing Territories until its people determine what its future political status should be.

American Samoa Governor Lolo Moliga.

American Samoa Governor Lolo Moliga. Photo: RNZI Monica Miller

At a seminar on decolonisation in Nicaragua, a statement by American Samoa's governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga said despite the many benefits in American Samoa's relationship with the US, its current political status as an unincorporated and unorganised US territory is neither sustainable nor economically secure.

American Samoa's Attorney General, Talauega Eleasalo Ale, delivered the governor's statement which also mentioned political status options such as full independence, free association, a commonwealth or an organic act.

For decades the territory has asked to be removed from the United Nations list.

The seminar is reviewing the status of the 17 territories on the UN list, including American Samoa, Guam, French Polynesia, New Caledonia, Tokelau and Pitcairn Island.