Temaru off to France in presidential bid

3:26 pm on 10 August 2016

The leader of French Polynesia's pro-independence movement Oscar Temaru will travel to Paris next week to meet politicians who back his candidacy for the French presidency.

French Polynesia leader Oscar Temaru.

French Polynesia leader Oscar Temaru. Photo: RNZI

Tahiti Nui TV reported that so far 217 elected politicians were endorsing his bid to be a candidate next year.

500 such backers are needed to be allowed to run for the French top job.

When Mr Temaru announced his plan to run in January, he said his aim was to win most votes in Tahiti and not in mainland France.

Pacific Leaders: front row Victor Tutugoro, Sir Michael Somare, Oscar Temaru

Pacific Leaders: front row Victor Tutugoro, Sir Michael Somare, Oscar Temaru Photo: RNZ / Johnny Blades

During his stay in France, Mr Temaru is expected to meet President Francois Hollande who visited Tahiti half a year ago.

Mr Temaru will also travel to Kazakhstan where in Soviet times 456 nuclear weapons tests were carried out.

Kazakhstan eliminated its nuclear weapons after the collapse of the Soviet Union and has since been campaigning for a nuclear-free world by 2045 - the year of the United Nations' 100th anniversary.