“Vanuatu is not free until all of Melanesia is free”—Vanuatu Govt reiterates its support for Papuan independence to MSG leaders

Members of Vanuatu's Government including PM Charlot Salwai (centre, in bird of paradise headdress) with leaders of the Papuan independence movement yesterday in Port Vila. Photo: Jen Robinson

Members of Vanuatu’s Government including Prime Minister Charlot Salwai (centre, in bird of paradise headdress) with leaders of the Papuan independence movement yesterday in Port Vila. Photo: Jen Robinson

“Free West Papua” graffiti on cement walls around town sums up Vanuatu’s Christmas wish for its Melanesian brothers and sisters meeting now in Port Vila. Welcoming independence leaders from the Indonesian ruled territory, Prime Minister Charlot Salwai reiterated Vanuatu’s strong stand in favour of independence for West Papua—and for French Polynesia and New Caledonia. Vanuatu’s stance on decolonization remains as strong as it was during our own independence 36 years ago. West Papua campaigner, Benny Wenda, told Daily Post of the Melanesian spirit which binds the people of Melanesia in their attempt to be granted full membership of the Melanesian Spearhead Group. Demonstrations to this effect have been taking place in West Papua and it is reported that one demonstrator was killed and 528 arrested, recently, including six children of less than ten years of age.

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MSG members to meet on 20th December to discuss West Papua’s membership

Supporters of full membership of MSG for West Papua demonstrate in Port Vila last April. Photo: AWPA

Vanuatu supporters of West Papua full membership of MSG marching in Port Vila last April. Photo: AWPA


December 20 is now proposed as the date for the MSG Leaders Summit to discuss membership, especially West Papua’s. The meeting was postponed from the first week of October in Port Vila. The new DG Amena Yauvoli told Kizzy Kalsakau of Buzz FM Nightly News that the date awaits confirmation from MSG Leaders. The MSG Secretariat is simply awaiting a consensus on the date. (Daily Post)

The People’s Plan as outlined yesterday on this website has been under discussion today in the National Convention Centre. This National Development Plan is to cover the period from Read the rest of this entry »


Australia funds aerial fisheries surveillance and new longer-range patrol vessel

Illegal fishing costs Pacific countries dearly – the estimate for just species alone, tuna , is Vt66.7 billion per year. Photo: NOAA

Illegal fishing costs Pacific countries dearly – the annual estimated loss for just one species, tuna, is Vt66.7 billion per year, according to the Forum Fisheries Agency. Photo: NOAA

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MSG membership for United Liberation Movement for West Papua postponed on legal technicality

Papua Merdeka! Photo: indoprogress.com

The Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) Leaders’ meeting, currently being held in Honiara, Solomon Islands, yesterday deferred its decision to welcome the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) as a full member of MSG until another meeting planned for Port Vila in September. The MSG says this decision was taken as the wording of MSG’s rules for membership needs to be clarified to give ULMWP, a liberation movement, the same membership status as MSG founding member (and fellow liberation movement), Front de libération nationale kanak et socialiste (FLNKS) of New Caledonia.

MSG associate, Indonesia, the colonial occupier of West Papua, opposes ULMWP joining the MSG, and is currently supported by only two out of the five founding members of MSG, Fiji and Papua New Guinea.

The majority of the founding members of MSG – Vanuatu, FLNKS and Solomon Islands – support full membership for the West Papua liberation movement, as do the majority of the population of all MSG countries.

PNG PM Peter O’Neill, who has been a vocal supporter of Indonesia, is currently fighting for his political life as his government faces a vote of no-confidence in PNG’s parliament.

O’Neill has also come under attack from former Prime Minister of PNG, Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare, for opposing West Papuan independence in defiance of the overwhelming support of PNG’s people for the decolonisation of the other half of the island of New Guinea, where he says “our ancestors roamed freely over our shared land and sea for centuries prior to colonial and Christian interventions”.

Here’s the full text of the MSG’s statement on the decision: Read the rest of this entry »


MSG countries approve Free Trade Agreement; Unelco delivers big dividend to National Provident Fund

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West Papuan leaders back MSG Chairman Sogavare against Indonesia; Decentralisation to get big push from Govt

MSG Chairman and Solomon Islands Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare (4th from the left), holding the West Papuan national flag next to West Papuan Independence Leader Benny Wenda and other members of the United Liberation Movement for West Papua.

MSG Chairman and Solomon Islands Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare (4th from the left), holding the West Papuan national flag next to West Papuan Independence Leader Benny Wenda and other members of the United Liberation Movement for West Papuan in Honiara in November last year.

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410th anniversary of European arrival; Solomon Islands and Vanuatu agree on MSG

De Queiros' cartographer Don Diego de Prado's map 'The Great Bay of St Philip and St James in Espiritu Santo', published in 1608

De Queiros’ cartographer Don Diego de Prado’s map ‘The Great Bay of St Philip and St James in Espiritu Santo’, published in 1608

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