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Pato reaffirms PNG's position on West Papua to Jakarta

Radio New Zealand International - July 21, 2018

Papua new Guinea's Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato says he has reaffirmed his country's support for Indonesian control of West Papua.

It was one of the points of discussion in Mr Pato's meeting with his Indonesian counterpart Retno Marsudi on Thursday night in Jakarta.

Mr Pato provided some clarity to the Indonesian government on what he said was some recent misreporting on the issue of PNG's stance on West Papua.

Other matters discussed in the bilateral meeting were Indonesia's assistance to PNG in its preparations for hosting the APEC leaders summit in November

Mr Pato said he was grateful that Indonesia successfully proposed PNG to host APEC 2018 and for its support in hosting the event.

He said they had a useful discussion on cooperation for the economic development of the PNG-Indonesia border regions, and on planning for the first PNG-Indonesia Ministerial Forum.

According to Mr Pato, he reaffirmed Papua New Guinea's longstanding and permanent position on the status of the West Papua and Papua provinces of Indonesia.

"They are an integral part of the Republic of Indonesia," he said. "There has been some misreporting on this issue. Papua New Guinea's position has not changed and there is no intention to ever change it."

Source: http://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/362293/pato-reaffirms-png-s-position-on-west-papua-to-jakarta