Contact: Tanya Harris Joshua 202-208-6008
WASHINGTON, D.C. (January 12, 2016) – Assistant Secretary Esther Kia’aina is traveling this week to visit leadership of both the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and the Republic of the Marshall Islands.
In the Northern Mariana Islands, Assistant Secretary Kia’aina attended the funeral services for the late CNMI Governor Eloy Songao Inos, following which she met with the recently sworn-in Governor of the CNMI, Ralph Deleon Guerrero Torres and Lieutenant Governor Victor Borja Hocog. The former Lieutenant Governor and former CNMI Senate President were sworn in on Tuesday, December 29, 2015, as the new Governor and Lieutenant Governor, respectively.
While in the Northern Mariana Islands, the Assistant Secretary also met with Senate President Francisco Manglona Borja, outgoing Speaker of the House Joseph Pinaula Deleon Guerrero, and incoming Speaker of the House Ralph Sablan Demapan.
The Assistant Secretary travels next to the Marshall Islands to meet with the newly inaugurated President of the Republic of the Marshall Islands Casten Nemra, who was voted in by the newly- elected members of the Nitijela (Parliament) of the Republic. Nikolao Pula, Director of the Office of Insular Affairs will accompany the Assistant Secretary on this visit.
The Assistant Secretary for Insular Areas carries out the administrative responsibilities of the Secretary of the Interior in coordinating federal policy for the territories of American Samoa, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and administering and overseeing U.S. federal assistance to the Freely Associated States of the
Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau under the Compacts of Free Association. The Assistant Secretary executes these responsibilities through the Office of Insular Affairs.