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Fiji records 127 new cases of COVID-19, three deaths reported

Fiji has recorded 127 new cases of COVID-19 and three deaths Monday, increasing the total number of cases in the Pacific nation to 49,043 and 536 deaths since the outbreak that started in April. Permanent secretary for Health,Dr James Fong said 83 cases are from the Western division, 36 cases are from the Central division in Vitilevu, Fiji's main island...

Four Papuan districts can form South Papua Province: Indonesian Home minister

Indonesian Home Minister Tito Karnavian highlighted “a specialty” pertaining to the public's aspirations in the Merauke, Boven Digoel, Mappi, and Asmat districts in Papua Province regarding a regional division to create South Papua Province. To this end, the government will revise the Papua Special Autonomy Law, according to Karnavian, who had earlier headed the Papua police headquarters before being promoted...

Pandemic increasing risk factors for suicide, UN health agency warns

Suicide prevention must be prioritized after 18 months of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Americas office of the World Health Organisation (WHO) warned ahead of World Suicide Prevention Day, commemorated annually on 10 September. Studies show that the global crisis has exacerbated risk factors associated with suicidal behaviours, such as job loss, trauma or abuse, mental health disorders and barriers to...

Fiji’s Covid-19 outbreak prompts a new way of leading

Op-ed by Tessa Price, Regional Executive for the Pacific ANZ NZ Ltd After finding herself locked out of Fiji when the borders were closed in April - and locked down in Sydney as it faces its own Covid-19 outbreak - ANZ Regional Executive for the Pacific Tessa Price writes about how she’s finding new ways to lead remotely, helping...

PNG deputy PM Sam Basil suspended over alleged misappropriation of K150,000

Papua New Guinea deputy Prime Minister and Bulolo MP Sam Basil has been suspended from official duties pending a leadership tribunal inquiring into allegations of misconduct in office against him. This comes after public prosecutor Pondros Kaluwin on Friday presented the reference and statement on the allegations, thus officially starting the inquiry. Basil, as chairman of Bulolo district development authority, allegedly...

Fiji Health Ministry prepares for border opening

Medical experts’ reveal that Fiji does not need to wait for the two-week buffer period to re-open containment borders once 60 percentof the eligible population are fully vaccinated. Fiji Medical Association President, Dr Basharat Munshi said the vaccination threshold is a national guide and should not to be mistaken as scientific data when assessing Fiji’s COVID situation. “Numbers are guidelines and...

Fiji seeking Australian support with ‘long COVID’ cases

Fiji’s health chief is asking his Australian colleagues for support and advice to help deal with emerging cases of what's called 'long COVID'. It's the latest development in the country's outbreak that first began in April, but Dr James Fong believes the worst is behind them. Fiji has had nearly 49,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases and Dr Fong told Pacific Beat they're...

Unsworn HRPP MPs turned away: Samoa Speaker

The 18 unsworn members of the Human Rights Protection Party(HRPP) will likely return to by-elections after the Samoan Speaker of the House denied their request to be sworn in on Tuesday. The Speaker of the House, Papalii Lio Masipau in a letter to to the leader of the HRPP Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi confirmed his decision to deny the members access...

COP26: Poorest countries fear not reaching UK for climate summit

The world's poorest countries say they are worried about getting to the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow in November. Twenty are on the UK's Covid red list - meaning hotel quarantine for arrivals. They say the fortnight-long talks may involve being away for seven weeks as they will also have to isolate on return. And they warn that flights from Pacific islands...

Commonwealth to champion climate-vulnerable small states at COP26

The Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland called for urgent action to ensure improved climate resilience of small states and promised to amplify the concerns of small and other vulnerable states around climate change at the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference COP26 in Glasgow this November. During visit to The Bahamas last week, the Secretary-General said: “Without a doubt, we are...

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Solomon Islands media boycott Chinese foreign minister’s visit to Honiara

Media Association of Solomon Islands (MASI) has issued a boycott notice to its members for the PRC Press event scheduled for Thursday. MASI President, Georgina...

China seeks Pacific Islands policing, security cooperation – document

China will seek a region-wide deal with almost a dozen Pacific islands covering policing, security and data communications cooperation when Foreign Minister Wang Yi...

Solomon Islands journalists shut out of China foreign minister visit, raising secrecy concerns

Pacific journalists have raised serious concerns about secrecy surrounding the upcoming marathon tour of the Pacific by China’s foreign minister, who will be visiting...