Tuesday, 8 January 2008 10:32 PM

Taiwan to Appoint First Aboriginal Diplomat

Taiwan is said to be about to appoint its very first aboriginal diplomat.

According to Radio Taiwan International, Taiwan's foreign minister, James Huang, made the announcement last week while participating in an aboriginal festival in Taitung, eastern Taiwan, with ambassadors from Taiwan's diplomatic allies.

The report further states that it is expected the appointment will be Taiwan's representative to the South Pacific nation of Fiji. In making the announcement, Mr. Huang said that Taiwanese aboriginal tribes share cultural affinities with many South Pacific nations and that Taiwanese aboriginal culture is an asset for Taiwan's diplomatic work.

Taiwan's aborigines are genetically related to Malay and Polynesians.

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By STEVE BANI Vura Heights, East Honiara
By GEOFFREY MAURIASI USP, Lacuala Campus, Fiji
By CHARLES KOULI Gizo, Western Province