The 22nd Melanesian Spearhead Group Leaders Summit has concluded successfully in Port Vila, Vanuatu yesterday with the adoption of two declarations- one on security and the other on Climate Change.
History in the making for this is the first time that MSG in its meetings have converged to execute two declarations.
With the collaboration of earnest and hard-working officials, MSG leaders have arrived at the two documents pointing to the direction MSG is taking on matters that concerns its people.
On issues surrounding the discharge of the Fukushima Nuclear Treated Water into the Pacific Oceans, the Leaders have condemned Japan’s intention to dispose the treated water into the Pacific Ocean.
The Leaders urged Japan NOT to discharge the treated water until and unless the Fukushima Nuclear treated water was unquestionably proven to be safe by science.
The MSG leaders further called on Japan to respect both the Regional and International Treaties and Frameworks which the Pacific Islands States have adopted to address nuclear issues in the Pacific Ocean.
On Climate Change, MSG Leaders have endorsed that the International Court of Justice (ICJ) advisory opinion be sought with respect to the responsibility of States vis-à-vis Climate Change. The MSG Secretariat is mandated to submit, as soon as possible, a request for participation in the ICJ advisory proceedings and, if granted, to make timely written submissions to ICJ.
On MSG security strategy, leaders have agreed that the Secretariat to undertake consultations and an MSG Security Force be discussed within the context of the proposed MSG Security Strategy to promote and maintain peace and security in the region.
MSG Leaders have also taken a stand on human rights issues in Indonesia’s West Papua Province, urging the Pacific Islands Forum to conduct a mission to West Papua and Papuan Provinces, taking into consideration its root causes.
Further, the MSG chair has been requested to write to Indonesia to allow the visit of the UN Human Rights Commissioner to West Papua and request the UN Human Rights Commission to have their report on Human rights violations in West Papua delivered in good time for the consideration of the next MSG Summit in 2024.
The Melanesian sub-regional group also approved and issued the Declaration on the Concord for Peace, Mutual respect, Cooperation and Amity.
While acknowledging the process for signature and ratification of the Melanesian Free Trade Agreement, Leaders agreed to include Indonesia in the development of the MSG Travel Card.
Leaders also took a united stand on the New Caledonia decolonization process agreeing for the MSG Chair to write to the President of France expressing strong opposition to the way the 3rd Referendum was conducted and advise that MSG does not recognize the results of the 3rd Referendum on the basis of the PIF’s Observer Report.
MSG Leaders also approved Vanuatu’s bid to host the PIF’s Leadership Meeting in 2023 to coincide with Vanuatu’s Golden Jubilee and to mark the ending of the National Development Plans.
The next MSG Leaders’ Summit will be in April 2024 in Suva, Fiji.
The Summit was chaired by Hon. Alatoi Ishmael Kalsakau Maau’koro MP, Prime Minister of the Republic of Vanuatu and Chair of the MSG.
Leaders in attendance included Hon. Manasseh Sogavare MP, Prime Minister of Solomon Islands, Hon. Sitiveni Rabuka MP, Prime Minister of Fiji, Hon. James Marape MP, Prime Minister of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea and Mr. Victor Tutugoro, Spokesperson of the Front de Liberation Nationale Kanak Socialiste (FLNKS).
-PM Press Sec