By ANTHONY SIL in The National
MEDIA reports on the alleged
If true, it has not only relegated PNG’s diplomatic practices to the whims of subversive elements, but has also brought into question the country’s “One-China policy”.
PNG has benefited much from this policy through development aid and direct investments.
To some observers the scandal only propagates an evolving norm of frivolous attitudes and self-interests of some PNG diplomats.
Unfortunately, past scandals have not been properly addressed by the Government and the departments concerned.
For the people of PNG, this alleged scandal militates against national interests. The public can only despairingly talk of having to see another diplomatic blunder, like “a dog going back to its vomit, every time a PNG plenipotentiary is sent abroad.
Article 2 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations (VCDR), 1961 states: The establishment of diplomatic relations between states, and of permanent diplomatic missions, takes place by mutual consent.
This simply means that only a State bestowed with the principles of “sovereignty” under International Law, namely, non-intervention, equality and immunity can engage in diplomatic relations.
In my opinion,
The ongoing struggle by the Taiwanese people to be politically independent is a domestic matter for the government of
It was ill-conceived for PNG representatives to covertly negotiate with Taiwanese counterparts.
PNG’s act in essence amounts to interfering into
Any State by virtue of its sovereignty has the right to give diplomatic recognition to
But it is inconceivable and a “shot in the foot” for PNG to covertly give diplomatic recognition to
Or does the PNG Government plan a diplomatic shift from
Arrangements of diplomatic representations between States in the post-WWII era take place overtly within the framework of the
For example, Articles 3 to 5 provide for the functions of diplomatic missions, formalities of accreditations and recognition of types of representations.
Diplomatic relations are governed by International Law, treaties, conventions and acceptable practices based on the principles of “sovereignty” and only applicable to states.
The initial willingness of PNG negotiators to covertly arrange for
If indeed PNG does give diplomatic recognition to
On a broader level, we need to look at the benefits and challenges posed by
Its presence in the Pacific has been greeted with befuddled reaction by
South Pacific regional trade dynamics, whether bilateral or multilateral, will no doubt continue to be influenced by
Our Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, therefore, needs to be more vigilant in the way it manages its diplomats and others entrusted to deal with
The PNG-Taiwan dollar-diplomacy has no substance of national interests other than to serve the interests of a few.
More than 30 years ago, a gentleman by the name of Harold Nicolson once said: “The policy of cabinet can only be rightly executed by man of experience, integrity and intelligence; by man of resource, good temper and courage.
“A man above all, who is not swayed by emotion or prejudice, who is profoundly modest in all his dealings for they guarantee moral ascendancy, truthfulness, precision.
“A man who is guided only by a sense of public duty and who understands the value of cleverness and the virtues of reason, moderation, discretion, patience and tact.”
These qualities are indispensable prerequisites for the exercise of diplomatic profession even in this age of information technology and private competition.
Most PNG diplomats, politicians and senior public servants in relevant departments entrusted to negotiate internationally are doing a fine job.
The diplomatic blunders created in the recent past including the current
Note: The writer is a lecturer in International Relations and Diplomatic Practices and Procedures at the