Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

Forum review team visits FSM

PALIKIR, Pohnpei (FSM Information Service): December 9, 2003 - The Pacific Islands Forum's Eminent Persons Group recently visited the Federated States of Micronesia as part of its comprehensive review of the 16-member Pacific Islands Forum and its Secretariat.

The Eminent Persons Group was established during the 34th Pacific Islands Forum meeting held last July in Auckland. Mandated to review the Forum and its Secretariat, the Eminent Persons work involves extensive consultations throughout the region seeking a wide range of views from representatives of Forum member governments; inter-governmental organizations, national institutions and civil society.

The Forum's review team to the FSM was headed by retired Australian Diplomat Robert Cotton and included New Zealand's Ambassador to the FSM, John Goodman. The Eminent Persons met with President Joseph J. Urusemal and members of his Cabinet, President of the College of Micronesia - Dr. Michael Tatum, Senator Resio S. Moses and various members of FSM's Civil Society.

The FSM officials raised various issues of concerns regarding the performance, vision and effectiveness of the Forum and its Secretariat.

Overseen by the current Forum Chair - New Zealand Prime Minister, Helen Clark, the review and its ensuing report is anticipated to make recommendations about the future shape and direction of the Pacific Islands Forum.

The report is expected to be further reviewed by a Reflections Group headed by Prime Minister Clark with prominent leaders of the region as members. Senator Resio S. Moses, of the FSM Congress, has been selected by the Chair of the Forum to be a member of the Reflections Group.

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