Pacific leaders must not be afraid to show courage in decision making in order to address pressing regional issues such as impacts associated with climate change and West Papua at the international stage.
These sentiments were shared by pacific civil society representatives that attended the Forum Secretariat-organised Troika breakfast this morning at the Cliff Hotel in Kolonia, Pohnpei.
In a two hour long breakfast dialogue with the Troika leaders (President of FSM, Samoan Prime Minister and PNG Foreign Affairs Minister), President of the Marshall Islands and the Palau State Minister, civil society representatives from the three sub regions talked on sports and youth unemployment, aging, violence against women and children, teenage pregnancy, fisheries, disability rights, humanitarian coordination and climate change mobility.
Pacific islands Association of NGOs executive director, Emele Duituturaga who was one of six speakers selected from the 16 CSO reps at the breakfast highlighted the need for Pacific leaders to remember the plight of West Papua.
“We are pleading with you Pacific leaders to remember the lives that have been lost in West Papua since the early 60s. Research estimates tag the number of Papuan lives lost to close to half a million. You can no longer turn a blind eye to their suffering.”
Contributed by: Pacific Islands Association of Non-Governmental Organisations [/restrict]