AMERICAN SAMOA’S FALEOMAVAEGA VISITING

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FRENCH POLYNESIA

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (June 29, 1998 - PACNEWS)---Congressman Faleomavaega Eni will use a trip to French Polynesia this week to discuss French nuclear testing in the South Pacific and additional political autonomy for French Pacific territories.

Faleomavaega is in Tahiti for the annual celebration of Autonomy Day, which marks the granting by France of more self-rule to the territorial government of French Polynesia.

While in Tahiti, the Congressman said he will discuss with President Gaston Flosse the conclusions of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) study on French nuclear testing at Moruroa and Fangataufa atolls.

Faleomavaega said the findings of the controversial study --that after 30 years of French testing, "radioactivity on the atolls does not present a danger to humans, animals and plants"-- are hard to believe.

The Congressman has been a vocal opponent of French testing and was jailed by French commandos in Tahiti two years ago for violating a ban on entry to the testing site at Moruroa.

Another important issue that the congressman hopes to discuss with President Flosse is New Caledonia's quest for greater autonomy from French rule through the Nouméa Accord.

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