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Wednesday, September 1, 1999

PINA Nius Online

FRENCH OVERSEAS MINISTER TO VISIT FRENCH POLYNESIA SEPTEMBER 17-21

PAPE‘ETE, French Polynesia (September 1, 1999 - PINA Nius Online)---French Assistant Minister for Overseas Territories, Jean-Jack Queyranne, will officially visit French Polynesia September 17 to 21, the daily newspaper La Dépêche de Tahiti reports.

One of the main purposes of the ministerial visit is to further discuss the French territory's moves toward greater political autonomy.

Last June, the French National Assembly passed a constitutional amendment that changes French Polynesia’s status from an "overseas territory" to that of an "overseas country."

The amendment remains to be approved by the French Senate during its October session.

In addition to meetings in the French territorial capital of Papeete, where he will confer with such top officials as French Polynesia President Gaston Flosse and High Commissioner Jean Aribaud, Queyranne also will go to Moorea to visit scientific research institutes based there, including the global coral reef initiative.

He will also go to the Gambier Islands to inspect a pearl farm.

FORMER FRENCH POLYNESIAN EVANGELICAL CHURCH LEADER DIES IN FRANCE AT 86

PAPE‘ETE, French Polynesia (September 1, 1999 - PINA Nius Online)---The former head of the Evangelical Church of French Polynesia, Father Henri Vernier, died in France at age 86, RFO-radio reports.

Vernier died at his residence of Chambon-sur-Lignon (near Toulouse) on Sunday.

He was born in Papeete in 1913 and grew up in the Windward Group.

He further studied in metropolitan France.

A prisoner during World War Two, he returned to French Polynesia in 1955 to serve the Evangelical church of French Polynesia until he retired in 1986.

He wrote several books, including "Le Vent des Cyclones" (Wind from the Cyclones), which tells the story of his church in French Polynesia.

TWO HUMAN FETUSES FOUND BURIED ON MOOREA ISLAND

PAPE‘ETE, French Polynesia (September 1, 1999 - PINA nius Online)---A French Polynesian police search team on Tuesday found two human fetuses at a home on Moorea island, RFO-radio reports.

The two fetuses initially were kept in cartons in a refrigerator by a couple from metropolitan France who apparently had not accepted the still-birth of their babies two months ago at Papeete's territorial hospital.

At the request of the parents, the bodies had been given to them for burial.

Neighbors had become suspicious when on Monday morning, they heard the couple arguing about the matter.

Police were alerted and a home search carried out.

The two fetuses were temporarily buried in a nearby yard and the couple is to appear in court shortly.

According to police inquiries, the "freezing" process seemed to have been an alternative chosen by the would-be father, pending identification of a proper burial place.

But, Les Nouvelles notes, neither Moorea municipality, a cemetery nor churches were contacted by the couple for a burial permit.

This bulletin was produced by the Pacific Islands News Association (PINA). Editor: Patrick Antoine Decloitre For more information, contact Nina Ratulele, PINA Administrator, at pina@is.com.fj

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