FSM officials shift immigration responsibility to the US

Two officials from the Federated States of Micronesia say that the responsibility for having FSM citizens removed from Guam is the responsibility of the US government. In the last few weeks, five convicted criminals were returned to their home state, Chuuk, by Governor Eddie Calvo. He claims that US immigration authorities have defaulted on their duty to deport them.

The convicts’ sentences were commuted by Calvo on agreement by the criminals to leave and never return to Guam. The decision was made by the Governor in an attempt to ease both overcrowding at the local prison facility on the island, and on the financial impact of keeping convicted immigrants on public services. The FSM’s speaker of the 19th Congress, Wesley Simina, expressed his concerns over the issue of immigration in Guam in a letter to the FSM President, Peter Christian, on 19 August.

Simina wrote that whilst sympathetic to the efforts made by the Governor of Guam to cope with some of the FSM’s bad elements on the island, it is an issue that needs addressing by the US government. It is uncertain whether the US government is aware of the FSM government’s concern.

Chuuk Senate President, Mark Mailo agrees and has urged Christian to consult with the US government on the matter. Under the Compact of Free Association agreement, the US government agreed to let citizens of the FSM enter the US without the need for travel US visas, and many citizens elect to live in Guam.