Delegates from French Polynesia have flown to New York for the annual meeting of the UN Decolonisation Committee.
The veteran pro-independence leader Oscar Temaru is heading his team while the French Polynesian government has sent the Equipment Minister Rene Temeharo as its spokesperson.
The territory was reinscribed on the list on non-self-governing territories in 2013, but France refuses to accept the inscription and engage in any UN-supervised process.
Temeharo said the inscription occurred at a time of political instability and without putting the issue to the voters.
He said French Polynesia was not a colony as it had a democratically elected territorial government.
France has not responded to calls to hold a referendum on independence.
The other main French territory in the Pacific, Kanaky New Caledonia, has been on the UN Decolonisation List since 1986, which France has recognised.
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