25 Feb 2009

French Polynesian politicians off to Paris amid Guadeloupe crisis

5:03 pm on 25 February 2009

The French Polynesian president, Oscar Temaru, is to join leaders from French overseas territories in Paris to discuss administrative matters amid the social unrest in Guadeloupe in the Antilles.

Mr Temaru is heading to France with his finance minister, Georges Puchon, and in the company of the territory's two members of the Senate and the two members of the French assembly.

He has told local radio that he decided to go because of a personal invitation from the French prime minister, Francois Fillon.

Mr Temaru says the situation in Tahiti is worse than in Guadeloupe because of five years of political instability.

There have been discussions on whether to disestablish the current structure to administer overseas territories in favour of placing officials in key ministries to deal with overseas territories.

Guadeloupe is a French overseas department, New Caledonia is an overseas territory while French Polynesia is an overseas country within the republic with a measure of autonomy.