N.Z. calls for peaceful resolution

The New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs has called on the parties in Samoa's political dispute to uphold the rule of law while offering to help hem them reach a resolution. 

In a response to Samoa Observer email queries that were sent on Sunday, Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta made comments on Monday evening about the unfolding political situation. 

She was asked about His Highness Tuimalealiifano Sualauvi II issuing another declaration last Saturday suspending the convening of Samoa's XVII Legislative Assembly, thereby overturning his earlier decision. She was als asked about the role that the New Zealand Government could have in resolving the situation. 

“Aotearoa New Zealand respects the sovereignty of Samoa and acknowledges the mana of Samoa’s democratic institutions including the courts which have an important democratic and constitutional role,” the Minister said in an email response that evening. 

“We call for all parties in Samoa to continue to uphold the rule of law and demonstrate respect for the democratic process. We are willing to offer support to Samoa should that be useful during this complex period.

“We recognise that Samoa has the combined wisdom and experience of traditional and church leaders who will want to see a peaceful outcome.

“We look forward to working with a democratically elected Government of Samoa.”

The nation's first elected female Prime Minister, Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, was sworn in outside Parliament on Monday evening.

On Monday evening, the Federated States of Micronesia become the first nation in the world to recognise the Prime Ministership of Fiame Naomi Mata’afa.

The United Nations on Monday had also called on the leaders of Samoa to find solutions to its current political crisis through dialogue and "in the best interest of the people and institutions of Samoa."

In a regular press conference held on 25 May, China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said they would not interfere, noting that Samoa is capable of handling its domestic affairs.

The question posted by Chinese state-owned media during press meet was: “There is a constitutional crisis in Samoa islands. Yesterday, the Prime Minister-elect was barred from entering the parliament while her predecessor has refused to relinquish the power. What’s China’s position on this issue? Which China considers as the legitimate Prime Minister of this country?”

In response, Mr Lijian said: "China and Samoa enjoy good relations. Committed to the principle of non-interference in others’ internal affairs, we believe that Samoa has the capability and the wisdom to properly handle its domestic affairs."

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