Thursday, December 12, 2019

Bougainville votes for independence

Earlier in the month, Bougainvilleans went to the polls in a landmark referendum to decide on whether they would remain part of Papua New Guinea or become independent. Yesterday, the results came in, with over 97% support for independence. The referendum wasn't binding - instead it means negotiations with the PNG government - but as part of the peace agreement which ended the civil war on the island, you'd expect it to be respected (and you'd expect New Zealand, which helped broker that agreement, to push for that). So hopefully in a few years time the Pacific will have a new nation.