1 Feb 2003

Papuan seperatists welcome Vanuatu willingness over embassy despite Jakarta threat

10:25 am on 1 February 2003

The international spokesman for the Papuan seperatists, Dr John Ondawame, says Vanuatu's indication that it may allow his movement to open an office in the country is a major step towards gaining independence from Indonesia.

Dr Ondawame says Vanuatu is completely within it's rights to voice its support for the Papuans and he hopes these steps will be followed by others in the region....

"Such a move is very encouraging and will inspire Papuans, particularly the liberation movement, the OPM, to gain more support around the region and the international community. I am very pleased that the Vanuatu government may take further steps and these steps should be taken by the bigger powers in the region like Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea."