Here's a quick bulleted notes from President Toribiong's briefing yesterday at the HOD chamber to OEK members, Council of Traditional Chiefs, and state governors. The president was the only one speaking throughout the briefing.
- Palau's lobbyist Jeff Farrow in D.C has sent word that Palau's compact financial assistance extension request for FY2010 has made it into DOI budget. Next step is the US Congress.
- The amount being negotiated is $18M/year plus inflationary factor. It is hope that the amount asked would allow the government to avoid withdrawing $15M yearly from the Compact Trust Fund.
- They posed no threat to the people and the country. They are not terrorists - and they have been ruled to be "non-enemy combatants."
- Meet the traditional requirements. It has been our ancient practice of extending help hand to those in need.
- A plus for Palau's international relations. It will deepen our close relationship to our closest ally. Koshiba suggested that it is a great opportunity for Palau to return the favor to the U.S. A small country helping the world most powerful country when it finds itself needing help. President Toribioing said it is akin to, "A chebuul chad a lokelii a meteet, eng chetengakl el tekoi."
- Uighur resettlement in Palau will only be temporary
- Their situation will be subject to periodic review
- And that Palau is agreeing to the requests purely on humanitarian ground
After Palau agreed to take the Uighurs, President Toribiong was then asked by the US officials if Palau has a request. He then asked to send a team to interview the Uighurs at Guantanamo.
But consider, If I were to said no, where do you think we would be in terms of our relationship with the US. "Ulekum ak dilu el kmo ng diak, eng uangerang a kleldelel malechub ang kelekeltel a deleuill er kid ma merikel er chelchal taem"