NEWS: Guam calls on UN members for support
June 13, 2017 (Hagåtña) — The United Nations’ Special Committee on Decolonization held its Caribbean regional seminar in St. Vincent and the Grenadines late last month. Amanda Blas, Executive Director of the Commission on Decolonization, will brief members of the Guam Decolonization Commission on this and other issues at today’s Commission meeting at 3 p.m.
The seminar covered the status and progress of decolonization efforts in non-self-governing territories and other insular areas that are under the administrative power of larger countries such as the United States, France, and New Zealand.
Blas provided UN members with an update on Guam’s experience as a territory of the United States and on the island’s decolonization efforts during the seminar.
The U.S. signed the United Nations charter in 1945, acknowledging the right to self determination. The U.S., however, has been inconsistent in supporting that right.
“In our quest to self-determination, we have followed the rules. Our efforts have been consistent with the UN Charter, our local laws, and the laws created for us by U.S. Congress; yet the voice of our people continues to get taken away, preventing us from deciding for ourselves the political future of our island,” Blas stated.
“In light of this, we are reaching out for support from not only the United Nations Special Committee on Decolonization, but from the UN member states as well. We ask that you urge the U.S. to assume its responsibility in allowing the Guam to fully exercise its inalienable right to self-determination.”
Dr. Michael Bevacqua, a member of the Commission on Decolonization who participated in the seminar as an expert, spoke on the challenges we face in determining our political future.
“A process of decolonization that must follow the rules of the colonizer is not decolonization: it is an extension of colonization,” he said.
Blas and Bevacqua’s statements will be considered by the Special Committee on Decolonization at its substantive session this month. The conclusions and recommendations that are developed from the seminar are then transmitted to the General Assembly.

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