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The Pacific Island Forum (PIF) and the Boe Declaration on Regional Security

In the Pacific region, 2018 was marked by the adoption of the Boe Declaration on Regional
Security. This document built upon previous declarations of security, which had provided the PIF with a very limited mandate in the field of disaster management. These can be traced to the Aituktaki declaration of 1997 which, although driven by metropolitan state priorities around instability, did include a broader reference to ‘the immediate risks to security in the region (…)
including natural disasters, trans-national crime including drug trafficking,
and economic, social and environmental policies’.

The Boe Declaration builds upon the commitments and principles of intervention agreed at Biketawa and further expands the concept of security to include a commitment to an increasing emphasis on ‘humanitarian assistance’. In addition, the preamble makes specific reference to importance of climate change and links the declaration to the global priorities agreed at the Paris Agreement. This provides a specific regional mandate in the field, which has previously been lacking. Furthermore, the parties ‘commit to the strengthening the existing regional security architecture inclusive of (…) regional organisations’ in accordance with the new definition.