19 Aug 2002

NZ prime minister please by change in attitudes at Forum meeting

10:53 am on 19 August 2002

New Zealand's Prime Minister, Helen Clark, says she believes the Pacfic Islands Forum has moved forward in the way it deals with issues affecting the region.

Ms Clark says in the past the organisation was at risk of becoming a laughing stock, but a change in attitude means it will now tackle problems affecting the region:

"At this Forum it was nothing unexceptional to discuss the Solomons and say, well, you know, how can we help? Eminent persons groups have been in, they've written a report - its pretty frank about the difficulties - but no one's sitting there saying we can't discuss someone's internal affairs, it's all out there and I think that's progress."

Helen Clark