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U.S has ‘no closer ally than Australia’, says Biden after Aukus pact

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U.S President Joe Biden and the Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison, have welcomed their new security ties after last week’s announcement that Washington would provide Canberra with advanced technology for nuclear-powered submarines as part of trilateral deal with the United Kingdom. “The United States has no closer or more reliable ally than Australia,” Biden said on Tuesday ahead of a...

Covid-19: Vaccine diplomacy swings in Pacific nations’ favour

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Geopolitical jockeying for influence has got some Pacific island nations vaccinated against Covid-19 much quicker than New Zealand. But is there a quid pro quo? National Correspondent Lucy Craymer reports. The Marshall Islands has said they don’t need vaccines from COVAX, Palau and Guam are vaccinating tourists and Fiji is preparing to open its borders as 80 percent of its...

Samoa to go on two-day lockdown for mass vaccination

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Samoa's National Emergency Operations Centre(NEOC) and the Ministry of Health has announced details for the mass vaccination roll-out on the two-day lockdown on Thursday and Friday this week. “Cabinet and its meeting 10 September approved the two days lockdown on 23 - 24 September to allow for the mass vaccination campaign across the whole country,” said the NEOC Chair, Agafili...

Fiji Solicitor General suspended

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Fiji's Solicitor General Sharvada Sharma has been suspended. Sharma was suspended by the President Jioji Konrote following allegations of misbehaviour. Sources within his office have also confirmed his suspension. Under the Constitution, the Solicitor General is appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Judicial Services Commission which first consults with the Attorney-General. The Solicitor-General may be removed from office for inability...

Call for ‘decisive action now’ to avoid climate catastrophe

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Speaking alongside the UK Prime Minister in New York on Monday the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, has called on world leaders for “decisive action now to avert climate catastrophe.” Guterres joined an emergency summit convened and attended by United Kingdom premier Boris Johnson, to press for more action on climate finance and other measures ahead of the watershed UN COP26...

Climate crisis: history will judge failure to act, UK PM says at UN

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UK’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson has warned the world’s rich countries that “history will judge”, if they fail to act now to tackle the climate crisis, as U.S climate envoy John Kerry suggested President Biden was poised to commit more funds to the fight. At the UN general assembly in New York, the prime minister urged other developed countries to...

Fiji records 121 new cases of COVID-19

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Fiji has recorded 121 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, increasing the total number of cases in the island nation to 50,010 and 573 deaths since the outbreak in April. Permanent Secretary for Health, Dr James Fong said 103 cases are from the Western division and 18 cases are from the Central division, in Vitilevu, Fiji's main island. “There have been...

Inquiry needed into Australia’s silence on West Papuan massacre, human rights groups say

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Human rights groups say revelations that Australia sat on its hands after learning of Indonesian military atrocities against West Papuan demonstrators are “deeply disturbing” and should prompt an independent investigation. A newly released unredacted intelligence report, shared with the Guardian, shows the Australian government had compelling evidence that the Indonesian military fired live rounds indiscriminately into a group of unarmed...

Fiji government to roll -out digital vax -check tool

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The Fijian Government on 04 October will roll out the digital VAX-Check tool, which will be made available to all workplaces, tertiary institutions, houses of worship, hotels, restaurants, cafés, cinemas, gyms, pools and tattoo parlours allowing them to open at 70 percent capacity, but only to fully-vaccinated persons. From Monday 20 September 2021, cinemas, gyms, tattoo parlours, salon/spa can apply...

Daru Hospital loses doctor to COVID-19

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A medical doctor working at Daru Hospital in Papua New Guinea became the latest death due to COVID-19 reported in less than two weeks. The doctor was medevaced to Port Moresby last Tuesday when she suffered severe distress and sadly she succumbed to the disease at the weekend. Deputy Controller of the National Pandemic Response Dr Daoni Esorom conveyed his condolences...

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Palau president Whipps calls on UN to include Taiwan

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Palau President Surangel Whipps Jr on Tuesday urged the United Nations to allow Taiwan to participate in its system on the first day of...

Bill for an Act to amend the Fiji Electoral Registration of Voters Act 2012...

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A Bill for an Act to amend the Electoral (Registration of Voters) Act 2012 was passed by the Fijian Parliament today despite strong opposition. This...

Cook Islander Vaine Marsters charged over unlicensed firearms in PNG

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-Two expatriates, a 62-year-old man and a 59-year-old woman, were separately charged in Papua New Guinea’s Alotau magistrate’s court last week with possessing unlicensed...