10 Oct 2007

French Polynesian leader changes mind and supports snap election in January

4:51 pm on 10 October 2007

The French Polynesian President Oscar Temaru has told the President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, that he respects his Government's decision to hold a snap election in January.

Mr Temaru, who last month became President for the third time after defeating Gaston Tong Sang in a vote of no confidence, is in Paris to touch base with the Sarkozy government.

Last week the territorial assembly strongly opposed Paris' plans for a snap election, but our correspondent, Patrick Decloitre, says Mr Temaru appears to have been swayed by a show of support from Mr Sarkozy.

"He seems to have got the assurance from Mr Sarkozy that even if those snap elections were held, as seems to be scheduled in January, and even if he, Oscar Temaru, were to win those elections and stay in office, then Mr Sarkozy seems to have told that 'we would still be willing to work with you'"