Call for UN involvement in PNG/Bougainville talks

5:27 am on 4 November 2020

A former Bougainville leader says future government meetings with Papua New Guinea must involve the United Nations.

Bougainville presidential candidate, Martin Miriori.

Martin Miriori Photo: Supplied

Presidential candidate and secretary of the Bougainville Interim Government during the crisis, Martin Miriori, said when the Joint Consultative Body next meets, the ABG must insist the UN is invited to chair this and all subsequent meetings.

He said this was necessary because Bougainville and PNG were at a delicate stage of the political process following last year's referendum, in which 98 percent of Bougainvilleans voted for independence.

Miriori said it was necessary to have a credible and neutral international body involved and the UN had been involved in the Bougainville crisis and its aftermath since 1991.

He said continued UN involvement would ensure there was a highly respected outcome of the negotiations over the referendum result.

President Ishmael Toroama is due to meet his PNG counterpart, James Marape, next week for preliminary discussions over the next JCB.

Miriori said the Bougainville case was not only a huge success story for UN peace-making efforts but both PNG and Bougainville could also be very proud of their achievement in demonstrating to the world how genuine and lasting peace could be reached.

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