in August 1988, President Salii was found killed by a
gunshot wound. The official version was about suicide. A new
vote on the association with the United States did not
achieve the necessary majority either.
In early 1992, Palau requested Japanese assistance in
patrolling its waters illegally used by Indonesian ships. In
debt, Japan was granted fishing rights.
At the end of the year, Kuniwo Nakamura was elected
president by a narrow margin. At the same time, 62% of
voters declared themselves willing to settle for a simple
majority requirement to enter into the association with the
United States. The 8th vote on this theme was carried out in
July 1993, and when no special majority was required, the
association was adopted by 68% of the vote. The scheme came
into force in October 1994, making Palau an independent
Nakamura advocated closer relations with Japan, to
increase trade and tourism between the two countries. That
is why he visited Tokyo in April 1995 and later that year
In November 1996, the first presidential elections were
held since independence and Nakamura was elected. Despite
protests from China, Palau decided to establish diplomatic
relations with Taiwan and open a consulate in Taipei.
In 1997, the country's government devised an economic
plan aimed at spreading the revenue base and reducing
In December 1999, Palau established diplomatic relations
with Taiwan. This political event was linked to an
aggressive Taiwanese policy of political recognition among
Pacific small states in return for financial assistance.