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Chinese role in Pacific communications prompts U.S concern

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In the Kiribati capital Tarawa, internet and phone provider Oceanlink looks unremarkable. But look a little deeper, and the ownership is revealed as Beijing-based Acclinks. “All the PRC-based telcos have a hand-in-glove relationship with Chinese intelligence,” said Paul Buchanan, a security and geopolitical analyst. “In fact, they’re mandated to do so by the constitution of the Community Party.” Acclinks has close ties to...

Tongan PM announces death of Cabinet Minister in NZ

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A Tonga Cabinet Minister, Viliami Manuopangai Hingano, passed away Friday, at the Auckland City Hospital in New Zealand, the Prime Minister’s Office has announced. Hingano travelled to New Zealand on 30 December for medical treatment, only two days after he was appointed as Tonga’s Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, on 28 December 2021, in the new government. “It is with...

Revised draft agreement on fisheries subsidies sets stage for pivotal negotiations at MC12

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The chair of the fisheries subsidies negotiations, Ambassador Santiago Wills of Colombia, on 10 June submitted to WTO members a revised draft agreement for new global rules to curb harmful fishing subsidies. Released ahead of ministers’ arrival at the 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) in Geneva, the text for consideration reflects delegates’ collective efforts in recent intensive meetings and suggests landing...

Penny Wong dives deep into the audacity of the Oceanic Pacific

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Nurturing relationships is paramount to break down unequal power dynamics ­– especially in working for women rights. By ‘Ofa-ki-Levuka (‘Ofa) Guttenbeil-Likiliki From the 1990s to the early 2000s, Oceanic writer and poet ‘Epeli Hau’ofa wrote of challenging the way the world (and even people of Oceania) often viewed Oceania with belittlement, due to both its geographical location and its mostly...

Naiqama, Kikau to lead Fiji Bati in Pacific Test

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Sydney Roosters back Kevin Naiqama will again captain Fiji Bati in the upcoming Pacific Test against Papua New Guinea, with Penrith Panthers strike forward Viliame Kikau to act as his deputy. The pair are among 15 NRL players in a 30-man squad named for the June 25 Test at Sydney's Campbelltown Stadium, which will headline a double-header also featuring Samoa...

Pacific Mini Games athletes from 6 countries arrive on Saipan

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The athletes of six of the 20 countries and territories that will compete in the 2022 Pacific Mini Games 2022 arrived on island Saturday and Sunday. These are Palau, Fiji, Vanuatu, Kiribati, Tonga and Papua New Guinea. The first team to arrive Saturday was Palau whose delegation consisted of 80 individuals. They have already been to the venues and are training...

13,000 troops, 200 aircraft, 2 aircraft carriers: Massive exercise unfolds in Marianas, Palau

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Residents of the Mariana Islands and the Republic of Palau are being assured that a major U.S military exercise being conducted in the region includes environmental mitigation measures when live fire is being used in the waters of Micronesia. Organisers of Valiant Shield 2022, a biennial training event that involves every branch of the American armed forces, invited local media...

PM Ardern says there’s ‘power in collective’ when facing China in Pacific

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New Zealand Prime Minister has told Australian media there is “power in the collective” when dealing with China in the Pacific, calling on all local leaders to be involved in discussing the region's security. Jacinda Ardern is in Sydney for a meeting with new Australian leader Anthony Albanese. The pair are expected to discuss the 501 deportation issue, climate change,...

Tonga’s Tu’i’onetoa loses second electoral petition

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Tonga's former prime minister, Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa, has lost a second electoral petition for bribing voters ahead of last year's election. He, along with three current cabinet ministers, already has a stay on earlier election petition losses. RNZ Pacific's correspondent in Tonga, Kalafai Moala, said, as with the first petition, this one involved the provision of water tanks to voters, but was...

U.S official says Pacific can expect more engaged America

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In the last eight weeks, the Pacific has been a hive of superpower activity. China's recent play for influence and power in the region has resulted in the United States upping its engagement. Mark Lambert, deputy assistant secretary at the U.S State Department, said his nation was trying the Pacific way of sitting down to talk, and doing it in a...

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New Zealand lobbied French on Solomon Islands-China pact, cables show

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New Zealand lobbied France’s territories in the Pacific to respond to news of a controversial security pact between China and the Solomon Islands that...

Inaugural meeting of the Pacific Australia Media Leaders Group Communique

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This week the ABC hosted the inaugural Pacific Australia Media Leaders Meeting in Ultimo, Sydney, Australia. The Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Managing Director David Anderson...

Nobles urge Tonga PM to resign as Minister of His Majesty’s Armed Forces

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Tonga's nobles are collectively calling on the Prime Minister Hu'akavameiliku Siaosi Sovaleni to resign his defence portfolio as Minister of His Majesty's Armed Forces,...