Pacific Islands Forum responds to ABC ban
The Forum Secretariat in Suva issued a statement Tuesday in response to the ban on ABC imposed by the Nauru Government, the host of the Forum Leaders annual meeting, in September this year.
"The Pacific Islands Forum also vigorously defends the right of any sovereign country to make its own lawful decisions about the ways in which it chooses to govern itself. While Nauru as a sovereign state has stated its position and concerns about media reporting, the Pacific Islands Forum has always stood by the principles of free and open press. This also means a responsibility by the press to be factual in its reporting, said the statement.
This year’s Pacific Islands Forum is an important meeting with an agenda that will drive further action on issues that directly impact the lives of Pacific people.
The Forum Secretariat is committed to working closely with all the Forum’s stakeholders, including the Government of Nauru and media organisations, to ensure the best possible outcome for all Pacific islanders.
On Monday, the Nauruan Government said, 'no representative from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation will be granted a visa to enter Nauru under any circumstances, due to this organisation's blatant interference in Nauru's domestic politics prior to the 2016 election, harassment of and lack of respect towards our President in Australia, false and defamatory allegations against members of our Government, and continued biased and false reporting about our country," the statement said.
The Government argued that it was within its right to "choose who is allowed to enter"