Cook Islands Government

What is the capital of Cook Islands?

Country Name Cook Islands
Full Country Name none
Former Name Hervey Islands
Etymology- history of name named after Captain James COOK, the British explorer who visited the islands in 1773 and 1777
Government Type self-governing parliamentary democracy (Parliament of the Cook Islands) in free association with New Zealand
Capital Name Avarua
Capital - geographic coordinate 21 12 S, 159 46 W
Capital Time Difference UTC-10 (5 hours behind Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Independence none (became self-governing in free association with New Zealand on 4 August 1965 and has the right at any time to move to full independence by unilateral action)
National Holiday Constitution Day, first Monday in August (1965)
Constitution history: 4 August 1965 (Cook Islands Constitution Act 1964)

amendments: proposed by Parliament; passage requires at least two-thirds majority vote by the Parliament membership in each of several readings and assent to by the chief of state’s representative; passage of amendments relating to the chief of state also requires two-thirds majority approval in a referendum; amended many times, last in 2004
Dependency Status self-governing in free association with New Zealand; Cook Islands is fully responsible for internal affairs; New Zealand retains responsibility for external affairs and defense in consultation with the Cook Islands

Cook Islands Capital City Map

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Cook Islands Government and Politics

Who is the president of Cook Islands?

Executive Branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Tom J. MARSTERS (since 9 August 2013); New Zealand High Commissioner Peter MARSHALL (since 10 January 2017)

head of government: Prime Minister Henry PUNA (since 30 November 2010)

cabinet: Cabinet chosen by the prime minister

elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; UK representative appointed by the monarch; New Zealand high commissioner appointed by the New Zealand Government; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or majority coalition usually becomes prime minister
Legal System: common law similar to New Zealand common law
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Legislative Branch: description: unicameral Parliament, formerly the Legislative Assembly (24 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote to serve 4-year terms); note - the House of Ariki, a 24-member parliamentary body of traditional leaders appointed by the Queen's representative serves as a consultative body to the Parliament

elections: last held on 14 June 2018 (next to be held by 2022)

election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - Demo 11, CIP 10, One Cook Islands Movement 1, independent 2; composition - men 15, women 9, percent of women 37.5%
Judicial Branch: highest resident court(s): Court of Appeal (consists of the chief justice and 3 judges of the High Court); High Court (consists of the chief justice and at least 4 judges and organized into civil, criminal, and land divisions); note - appeals beyond the Cook Islands Court of Appeal are heard by the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (in London)

judge selection and term of office: High Court chief justice appointed by the Queen's Representative on the advice of the Executive Council tendered by the prime minister; other judges appointed by the Queen's Representative, on the advice of the Executive Council tendered by the chief justice, High Court chief justice, and the minister of justice; chief justice and judges appointed for 3-year renewable terms

subordinate courts: justices of the peace
Regions or States: none
Political Parties and Leaders: Cook Islands Party or CIP [Henry PUNA]

Democratic Party or Demo [Tina BROWNE]

One Cook Islands Movement [Teina BISHOP]
International Law Organization Participation: has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration (New Zealand normally retains responsibility for external affairs); accepts ICCt jurisdiction
International Organization Participation: ACP, ADB, AOSIS, FAO, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IFAD, IFRCS, IMO, IMSO, IOC, ITUC (NGOs), OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UNESCO, UPU, WHO, WMO
Diplomatic Representation in the US: none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)
Diplomatic Representation from US: none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)
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