British Ambassador Stephen Lillie Presents His Credentials to President Mori
Palikir, Pohnpei (FSM Information Services): October 12, 2010 - This morning, President Mori met with British Ambassador Stephen Lillie of the British Embassy in Manila, to officially receive Lillie's letters of credence.
A letter of credence is an official letter sent by one head of state to another head of state, formally granting diplomatic accreditation to a named individual to be their ambassador in the country of the head of state receiving the letter.
The ceremony was attended by Vice President Alik; Ambassador Weidong Zhang of the People's Republic of China; Ambassador Susan Cox of Australia; Genichi Terasawa, Deputy Chief of Mission of the Japanese Embassy; and Lori Peterson Dando, Deputy Chief of Mission of the US Embassy, as well as members of the Cabinet.
Lillie expressed the great honor he felt in having been appointed British Ambassador to the FSM. He highlighted that the UK is a Pacific Island Forum Dialogue Partner and that the UK foreign minister had attended the Pacific Island Forum Meeting in Vanuatu this past summer, reaffirming Britain's commitment to maintaining strong links to the Pacific region.
On the issue of climate change, Lillie welcomed the initiatives undertaken by the FSM to raise international awareness of and action against climate change, including, he said, "through the Green Energy Micronesia Initiative, and the powerful speech delivered to this year's UN General Assembly by his Excellency Vice-President Alik."
"We shall continue to offer practical assistance to the FSM through our contributions to the European Union's development assistance program here, which assists sustainable development in areas such as renewable energy and disaster risk reduction," said Lillie.
Mori congratulated Ambassador Lillie on his accreditation and took the opportunity to reaffirm the FSM Government's commitment to strengthen the good relations between FSM and the UK. He reminded all those present that FSM had supported the UK candidature to the Human Rights Council, and to the International Court of Justice. "Our collaboration is based on shared democratic principles and values," said Mori.
He also took the opportunity to applaud the UK's continued efforts in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and informed Lillie that the FSM Government will be participating in the UN Climate Change Conference in Mexico later this year.
"The FSM Government will continue to seek the support of the UK Government and the European Union during this important event," said Mori, "to combat climate change." Mori explained that the FSM, with the support of other small island developing states, has developed a proposal which will be brought forward at the Conference, to phase out HFCs and altogether eliminate one of the six gases listed under the Kyoto Protocol.
After the ceremony and delivery of their respective speeches, Mori and Lillie held a brief private meeting. During this meeting, President Mori reiterated that climate change was certainly the "biggest challenge in our lifetime." He emphasized that FSM was not only looking for support from the UK Government, but also welcomed their guidance in the area of climate change.
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