23 Jul 2007

Secret French Polynesian talks aimed at ending years of instability - Gaston Flosse

3:41 pm on 23 July 2007

French Polynesia's former President Gaston Flosse says talks he held with his long-time foem another former President, the pro-independence leader, Oscar Temaru, were aimed at ending years of political instability.

In a television interview at the weekend, Mr Flosse confirmed the talks were directed at eventually toppling current President Gaston Tong Sang, who is a member of Mr Flosse's Tahoeraa Huiraatira party.

He says both he and Mr Temaru want to put an end to party politics and put French Polynesia's development first on the agenda.

The comment came after the French Government called on French Polynesian politicians to act responsibly.

Last week the assistant minister for overseas, Christian Estrosi, warned there is no longer time for controversies, destabilization and internal struggles.

He said he was calling on everyone to strengthen French Polynesia in the eyes of French citizens around the world.

In response Gaston Flosse said that the days of colonialism, when the secretary of state for overseas could dictate how French Polynesian politicians should behave, have gone.

He says they [French Polynesian politicians] are old enough and do not need to be lectured.