The Minister for Home Affairs, Pio Tikoduadua, together with the Republic of Fiji Military Forces Commander Major-General Ro Jone Kalouniwai are in Nouméa, New Caledonia to participate at the Annual South Pacific Defence Minister’s Meeting (SPDMM).
As the only ministerial platform addressing security and defence matters in the South Pacific, the SPDMM aims to foster discussions on crucial topics such as climate change and its consequences, preparedness for armed forces intervention during natural disasters (HADR – Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief), and the security of maritime spaces and exclusive economic zones among member countries.
The meeting brings together seven member states with military forces, including Australia, Chile, Fiji, France, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and Tonga.
Additionally, three observer states are the United States, Japan, and the United Kingdom, are also in attendance.
The three-day meeting commenced with a solemn Wreath Laying Ceremony by the defence ministers of the member states, followed by a traditional welcoming ceremony.
These ceremonial events set a respectful and ceremonial tone for the discussions that will take place during the summit.