Home > News > Regional
Thursday June 19, 2014 MYT 12:37:00 PM
Thursday June 19, 2014 MYT 12:39:14 PM
SUVA, Fiji: Fijian leader Voreqe Bainimarama accused the global community Thursday of abandoning Pacific island nations to "sink below the waves" instead of tackling climate change, singling out "selfish" Australia for criticism.
Opening a regional summit, he said there was "collective disappointment and dismay" in the Pacific at the failure to address climate change, which scientists blame for rising seas that threaten many low-lying island nations.
"The rising sea levels caused by global warming threaten the very existence of some of our neighbours - Kiribati, Tuvalu and the Marshall Islands," he told the Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF).
"(They) are already swamping the coastal areas of many Pacific nations, including Fiji.
"Yet if anything, the collective will of the global community to adequately address this crisis is receding," he told the summit, where Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was guest of honour.
Bainimarama noted "a distinct change of rhetoric" from Australia on climate change since conservative Prime Minister Tony Abbott was elected last year.
Abbott said earlier this month that he would not adopt any climate policies that would "clobber the economy".
"I appeal to Australia and other countries not to behave selfishly over the catastrophic prospect facing small island developing states," Bainimarama said.
"History will judge you harshly if you abandon us to our apparent fate of sinking below the waves because you don't want to make the necessary adjustment to your domestic policies."
Yudhoyono said climate change was among the greatest challenges facing the world and announced Indonesia was allocating US$20 million to help minimise its impact in the Pacific.
"Indonesia has a strong commitment to broaden its network of cooperation with PIDF countries in mitigating the impact of climate change," he said.
Yudhoyono also said he wanted two-way trade between Indonesia and Pacific island nations to triple to US$1.0 billion in coming years. -AFP
Tags / Keywords:
Regional, Voreqe Bainimarama, Fiji, climate change, Pacific Islands Development Forum
Climate change: UN backs fossil fuel divestment campaign
Aid effort stepped up after monster Vanuatu cyclone
Massive damage hampering Vanuatu cyclone aid effort
Dozens feared dead as cyclone pounds Pacific island of Vanuatu
Implement Green Technology Plan fast
One in 10 pay last respects
Sri Lankan president's brother dies after axe attack
Hong Kong rally marks half-year anniversary of democracy protests
Nestlé rewards consumers with biggest promotion ever
The great South Australian adventure
Living away from Malaysia can trigger a lot of different longings
Star2 Monthly Challenge: Top tips for hiking
Watch animals to detect quakes, scientists tell poor countries
A fitting show to honour legends
Copyright © 1995-2015 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)