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Vanuatu confident of support for climate change court action

Friday 8 July 2022 | Written by RNZ | Published in Regional, Vanuatu

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The Vanuatu government is confident it will receive full endorsement from Pacific Forum leaders for its campaign to seek an advisory opinion on climate change from the world's highest court - the International Court of Justice.

Regional heads of government will convene in Suva next week for the 51st Forum Leaders Meeting - their first face-to-face gathering since 2019.

The Forum Foreign Ministers meeting took place on Friday, ahead of the leaders' meeting starting on Monday.

Vanuatu's special envoy on climate change for the Pacific, Bakoa Kaltongga, says discussions at the foreign ministers' gathering saw an outpouring of support from members to call on the UN General Assembly to adopt a resolution asking the International Court of Justice to provide an advisory opinion on climate protections under international law.

Mr Kaltongga says Vanuatu fully expects leaders to endorse this ICJ pathway at next week's meeting.

Meanwhile, the Vanuatu government-led initiative has the backing of over 1500 civil society organisations in 130 countries.

Pacific youth climate activists and students, alongside Greenpeace Australia Pacific, Amnesty International, and others will hold a major flotilla action in Suva today, calling on Pacific leaders to endorse the Vanuatu-led ICJAO.