22 Aug 2008

Niue Premier pleased by Forum commitment to fight climate change

10:22 am on 22 August 2008

New commitments on climate change, a redoubling of efforts to meet the millennium goals and a push to speed up the bulk buying of fuel were some of the features of the Pacific Islands Forum summit communique.

The organisation has also named Tuiloma Neroni Slade as the new secretary general to replace the late Greg Urwin.

Tuiloma, who is presently a judge on the International Criminal Court at the Hague, won the position over two other candidates on the first ballot during the summit in Niue.

But the bulk of the communique is concerned with Fiji and the condemnation of the interim government and the unprecedented threat to suspend it from the body if elections are not held in March next year.

The new Forum chair, Niue Premier, Toke Talagi, had gone into the meeting wanting a Niue Declaration on climate change and he got his wish.

"We believe this is very important for the Forum. To have its own declaration with respect to climate change. Especially given that the Forum island countries are severely impacted by the effects of climate change."