Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

Protocol in the FSM States Being Hampered

Palikir, Pohnpei (FSM Information Service): February 7, 1997 - Acting President Jacob Nena on January 29 told the Governor of Yap State he has learned through consultations with the Department of External Affairs that Diplomatic Protocol Procedures in the FSM States, particularly in the State of Yap, are being hampered due to Federal Aviation Administration, FSM National Government, and State requirements.

Nena said, "Our National Government and State requirements perhaps can be waived so that diplomatic immunities and privileges be accorded to diplomats while traveling in the FSM. However, US Federal Aviation Administration regulations are something that still need to be clarified with the US Embassy here in Pohnpei."

"Because the FSM is a signatory Government to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, it is very important that we abide by diplomatic protocol procedures as established by the Convention," he said.

Nena said he is quite pleased that one of Governor Figir's departments, Youth and Civic Affairs which is coordinating protocol in Yap (External Affairs Department counterpart) has already initiated an agreement with Continental Micronesia, Public Works and Transportation (airport), Immigration and Resources and Development (quarantine) to establish protocol procedures for the arrival and departure of diplomats at the Yap International Airport. The agreement also establishes procedures that are accepted by both Continental Micronesia and Yap International Airport Authority which are operating under FAA regulations. These new procedures would require additional logistics to be performed by either Nena's office or the Department of External Affairs. Due to the distance between Yap and Pohnpei it would be very hard to accommodate these procedural requirements by either Nena's office or External Affairs.

"In the interest of effective services and to simplify the situation, of course with your approval, I'm empowering the Head of the Department of Youth and Civic Affairs of the Yap State Government to perform the procedural requirements and sign on all required forms pertaining to protocol on behalf of my office and the Department of External Affairs. The authority of the Department of Youth and Civic Affairs is confined to protocol matters in the State of Yap," Nena said.

"By copy of this letter," he said, "the Department of External Affairs will be so informed of this delegation of authority. Please inform your departments and/or agencies that are involved in the agreement of this new set up."

For further information on this release, please contact:

FSM Office of the President
Public Information: Press, Radio, Video
P.O Box 34
Palikir Station, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel.: (691) 320-2548/2092
Fax.: (691) 320-4356