2 Dec 2004

Flosse Government says police not needed to remove occupiers

4:14 pm on 2 December 2004

The Gaston Flosse-led Government in French Polynesia says it can run the territory for as long as necessary without having access to the presidential palace.

There are indications that occupations of government buildings and agencies, including the Lands department, by supporters of ousted president Oscar Temaru are all but over.

Mr Flosse expressed irritation, before quitting failed peace talks in Paris recently, over France condoning illegal occupations in the territory, which he said would not be allowed in France itself.

France controls police in French Polynesia, and Mr Flosse has labelled the occupiers terrorists.

But his spokesman, Jean Christophe Bouissou, says Mr Flosse is not about to ask France to send in the police to free the palace.

He says that is not appropriate in the territory of 240,000 where everyone knows everyone.

"We do not want to have any kinds of fights or harm on our people, so we have to talk, we have to talk sometimes days and days to reach out for some kind of solution. So it's a good thing not asking for the policemen or the army to do anything to do anything to break this kind of relationship we have here in our people."

Mr Bouissou says the Flosse Government is running the territory adequately from other offices.