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Australian pilot sentenced to 18 years in PNG

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An Australian pilot linked to the biggest drug bust in Papua New Guinea has been convicted and jailed for 18 years. The Waigani National Court on Friday sentenced David John Cutmore, 57, of Williams Landing, Queensland, Australia to 18 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to charges relating to money laundering by receiving of criminal property (cocaine). Cutmore had stated...

Over 690,000 Fijians so far registered to vote in December election

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The total number of registered Fiji voters as of last Friday stands at 692,918, out of which 345,118 are females and 347,800 are males. This has been confirmed by the Electoral Commission Chair, Mukesh Nand following the issuance of the writ of election at the State House in Suva today. Nand said Fiji is now in election mode and the Commission...

Writ for Fiji’s 2022 general election issued

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The writ for Fiji's 2022 General Election was issued by the President Ratu Wiliame Katonivere to the Fijian Electoral Commission Monday in accordance with Section 59 of the Constitution and Section 21 of the Electoral Act. “I command you to cause an election to be held according to law, of 55 members to sit and vote in parliament,” Ratu Wiliame...

Be angry, be strategic, Pacific climate negotiations urged

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By Sera Tikotikovatu-Sefeti I just wanted to say that sometimes a united voice means that you can also genuinely, assertively be angry.” These were strong words from Fijian activist and political adviser for Diverse Voices and Action (DIVA), Noelene Nabulivou, during the Pacific Climate Justice Summit 2022 last week. The regional summit, hosted by the Pacific Islands Climate Action Network (PICAN),...

Fiji Opposition political parties welcome announcement of election date

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Fiji's Opposition Social Democratic Liberal Party (SODELPA) says it is delighted that the date for the General Election has been announced. SODELPA Leader Viliame Gavoka was elated after he was advised that the election will be held on 14 December. “I was in church, after church I was told that the HonoUrable Prime Minister has made that announcement and I just...

Kiribati controversy as Attorney General becomes acting chief justice

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The separation of powers crisis in Kiribati escalated on Friday, with the Pacific country’s attorney general, Tetiro Semilota, appointed acting chief justice. Semilota was sworn in on Friday afternoon at a closed ceremony in the capital, Tarawa. Under the Kiribati constitution, the chief justice is appointed by the president, Taneti Maamau, acting on the advice of his cabinet. It was...

Goal of limiting global heating to 1.5C ‘more fragile’ than ever, says COP27 chair

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The goal of limiting global heating to 1.5C is “more fragile” than ever, as world leaders prepare to meet for crucial climate talks, the president-designate of the negotiations has warned. Sameh Shoukry, the foreign minister of Egypt, who will chair the UN COP27 climate summit next month, said in a rare interview that forging agreement would be harder than at...

Pacific aid surges as China, U.S vie for influence

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Regional powers poured record amounts of cash into the Pacific Islands during the coronavirus pandemic to help them weather the economic fallout as competition for influence heats up between China and the West. An annual study released by Australia's Lowy Institute on Monday showed financial assistance to the Pacific Islands rose 47 percent in 2020 versus the year before. Lead researcher...

Reclaiming a lost decade

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By Sanaka Samarasinha, UN Resident Coordinator to Fiji, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu As we surface from an unexpected global pandemic which left us with immeasurable loss of life and brought the worst recession in 90 years, we find ourselves amidst another period of political turmoil and economic unpredictability. For us in the Pacific, the climate emergency adds another...

Overcoming suspicion: reconciliation for Australia and Bougainville

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The angry reaction to Richard Marles’ comments should be a warning to Canberra about the need to settle past grievances. By Anthony Regan During a visit to Papua New Guinea earlier this month by Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Richard Marles, a newspaper report on one of his press conference answers sparked a stinging reaction from Bougainville President...

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Taiwan envoy says Tuvalu ties ‘rock solid’ post-election

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Lawmakers in Tuvalu have selected Feleti Teo as the Pacific island nation’s new prime minister, weeks after an election that put ties with Taiwan...

Australian pilot kidnapped, released unharmed in PNG

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-An Australian helicopter pilot and two locals kidnapped in a remote part of Papua New Guinea have been released unharmed. The pilot and two Digicel...

Ministers approve WTO membership of Comoros and Timor-Leste at MC13

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Ministers formally approved the WTO membership terms of Comoros and Timor-Leste at a special ceremony held at the 13th WTO Ministerial Conference (MC13) in...