Tahiti's Temaru marks UN decolonisation listing

11:00 am on 19 May 2020

The leader of French Polynesia's pro-independence movement has called on parents not to send their children to school today to mark the seventh anniversary of the territory's reinscription on the UN decolonisation list.

French Polynesia leader Oscar Temaru.

French Polynesia leader Oscar Temaru. Photo: RNZI

Oscar Temaru said the day should be used to teach the younger generation about the independence cause.

France took control of Tahiti and its islands in 1842 and kept it off the UN decolonisation list until 2013 when the territory was relisted by the UN General Assembly.

However France ignored the decision and refused to engage in any decolonisation process, describing it instead as a glaring interference.

Mr Temaru said tomorrow should be spent reflecting what happened.

Last year, the French Polynesian president Edouard Fritch told the UN the territory should be delisted again because most people opposed independence and voted for his party.

However, Mr Temaru argued that a referendum should be held with internationally acceptable standards in place, meaning that voting rights would be restricted to long-term residents.

To date Paris ignored all calls for a referendum made by either pro- or anti-independence politicians.

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