Micronesian leaders united in decision to withdraw from Forum

The five Presidents of Micronesia will now formally begin withdrawing from the Pacific Islands Forum.

Palau has already commenced with the process.  

A statement released today said the five Presidents of Micronesia will honour the Mekreos Communique and withdraw from the Forum as stated in a joint communique released also released today.

The leaders of Palau, Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, Kiribati and the Republic of the Marshall Islands met virtually yesterday (Monday).

According to the statement, Nauru President Lionel Aingimea “believes the Forum has lost its original intent to be a regional body and what the Forum was originally set up to do.”

The Micronesian leaders decision stems from the appointment of Cook Islands former Prime Minister Henry Puna as secretary general of the Forum last week.

The leaders argued the post should have gone to their candidate, Marshall Islands' diplomat Gerald Zackios based on an unwritten "gentleman's agreement" that the role be rotated by sub-region.

According to the leaders, it was Micronesia's turn.

The Mekreos Communiqué was endorsed at a special meeting of the Micronesian Presidents in Palau in October 2020.

The Communique underscores the Gentleman’s Agreement and intentions to withdraw from PIF should the agreement not be honoured and Micronesia denied its turn to nominate the secretary general of the premier regional institution.


Photo supplied Nauru Government Media Caption: Micronesian Presidents in their virtual meeting