On behalf of the Government of the United States, I want to convey my deepest condolences to the family of former Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare and the people of Papua New Guinea on his passing. Prime Minister Somare was a great statesman who guided Papua New Guinea’s independence and truly earned the title “Grand Chief.”

The United States honors the commitment to democracy that Prime Minister Somare demonstrated as Papua New Guinea’s first prime minister. His five decades of public service are a lasting legacy. In this time of mourning, please accept our profound sympathies and our reassurance that the United States will remember Papua New Guinea’s inspirational first leader.

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future