Forum Secretary General arrives in the Republic of the Marshall Islands

Majuro (February 26, 2018)- Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, Dame Meg Taylor is in the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) this week for a series of high level meetings and regional policy consultations.

Over the coming days Dame Meg will attend the 18th Micronesian President’s Summit and the 2nd Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) Leader’s Summit and observe the PNA Ministerial meeting. The Secretary General will also attend the commemoration of Nuclear Victims Remembrance Day on 1 March, and lead regional policy consultations with the Marshall Islands’ Government and representatives of civil society and the private sector. 

“I am pleased to be here in the northern reaches of our Blue Pacific continent once again.  We know that to achieve truly sustainable development in our region, we need to respond directly to the concerns of the communities we serve and draw on their wisdom and creativity. One of the main reasons for being here is to ensure that the issues and experience of the Northern Pacific people continue to be reflected in the policies and initiatives of the Pacific Islands Forum,” said the Secretary General.    

The Forum Secretariat has been active in the region over the last two months conducting policy consultations with a broad cross section of Pacific islands stakeholders. Areas of focus during the discussions have included the proposal for an expanded regional security declaration to be known as Biketawa Plus, and innovative approaches to building the resilience of Forum countries and communities to the effects of climate change and disasters in the region.

On Thursday the Secretary General will be a guest speaker at the opening ceremony for the Nuclear Victims Remembrance Day in Majuro. The ceremony marks the anniversary of the detonation of the ‘Castle Bravo’ thermonuclear hydrogen bomb in the Bikini Atoll in 1954, and honours the victims and survivors of nuclear testing carried out by the United States of America (U.S) between 1948 and 1956.

“Over the past two decades the Pacific Islands Forum has stood in solidarity with the Republic of the Marshall Islands in its efforts to seek appropriate remedies from the U.S for the ongoing legacy of their nuclear weapons testing program.  We will continue to maintain our collective advocacy on this issue, and encourage the US to reassess its approach to the assistance sought by the Marshall Islands’ Government.”

The visit concludes this Friday when the Secretary General and Forum Secretariat team move to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands for the next leg of consultations.    


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