15 Jun 2021

Palau leader holds firm on leaving Pacific Forum

From Pacific Waves

The president of Palau, Surangel Whipps Junior, is holding the line on withdrawing from the Pacific Islands Forum, despite calls for dialogue from its new boss Henry Puna.

The former Cook Islands prime minister has been in the secretary general's role for a couple of weeks and has said he's committed to working with all member nations to strengthen the forum family.

Palau along side its four Micronesian neighbours believe they had a gentlemen's agreement that it was Micronesia's turn to hold the top job at the leading regional organisation.

Whipps says Puna's selection was a "slap in the face" for Micronesia.  

Our correspondent in Palau, Bernadette Carreon, told Sally Round the country backs the president's staunch stand.

President Surangel Whipps Jr

President Surangel Whipps Jr Photo: Richard Brooks

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