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China military expert says Scott Morrison’s red line is ‘ridiculous’

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A former senior colonel in China’s People’s Liberation Army has laughed off suggestions that Beijing takes Australia’s concerns about its new pact with the Solomon Islands seriously. China and the Solomon Islands recently signed a security pact, and Australia and the US now fear Beijing will use the deal as an opportunity to expand its military presence in the Pacific. Prime...

New clues shed light on ‘pivotal’ moment in the great Pacific migration

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The peopling of the Pacific is one of the most significant migrations in human history. And now an archaeological discovery on a small island in Papua New Guinea has recast the early scope of this settlement, in a finding archaeologists say could explain the migration east three millennia ago. The unearthing of animal bones and tools on Brooker Island, 200km...

French Polynesian mayors support safeguarding South Pacific Ocean and tradition

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French Polynesian President Édouard Fritch recently committed to conserving 1 million square kilometers (386,000 square miles) of the ocean by creating a new large-scale marine protected area and establishing artisanal fishing zones around each of its 118 islands in the South Pacific Ocean. The waters surrounding the remote islands offer habitats to an abundance of marine life, including 21 species...

Labor pledges more foreign aid to Pacific with plan ‘to restore Australia’s place as first partner of choice’

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Labor will vow to increase foreign aid to Pacific island countries and ramp up patrols to fight illegal fishing, as it makes an election pledge to “restore Australia’s place as first partner of choice for our Pacific family”. A boost to regional broadcasting is also part of the package, with Labor seeking to intensify political pressure on the prime minister,...

Japan sends senior official to Solomon Islands over China security pact

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Japan dispatched a senior official to the Solomon Islands on Monday amid concern that a recently concluded security pact between the southwest Pacific nation and China will increase Beijing’s military influence in the region. During his trip through Wednesday, Parliamentary Vice Foreign Minister Kentaro Uesugi is scheduled to discuss the enhancement of bilateral ties and collaboration in the international arena...

Vanuatu PM call for Russia and Ukraine to return to negotiating table

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Vanuatu Prime Minister Bob Loughman has called on the governments of Russia and Ukraine to return to the negotiation table, as a peaceful approach to ending their prolonged conflict. “This is in lieu of Vanuatu’s relationship with Russia and Ukraine, and its long-held foreign policy approach of ‘friend to all and enemy to none’,” the PM said in a statement. “It...

Fiji’s 2022 General Election campaigns start today

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Fiji’s official 2022 General Elections campaign period starts today – 26 April, 2022. The Fijian Elections Office Monday launched the campaign guidelines detailing the do’s and don’ts that political parties have to adhere to while campaigning. According to the Electoral Act 2014, the campaign period must not be earlier than 30 days prior to the completion of the three years and...

NZ medical team in Tonga helping mental health fallout after tsunami

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-A New Zealand medical team in Tonga is overwhelmed by the level of mental health support needed by those affected from the volcanic eruption and tsunami three months ago. The group of eight from the Pasifika Medical Association (PACMAT) has been helping hundreds of people and says there has been deep trauma amid resilience. PACMAT lead Amanaki Misa said some children...

Interim President Benny Wenda statement on West Papua: Indonesia must allow UN visit before Bali G20 meeting Interim President Benny Wenda statement on West Papua: Indonesia must allow UN...

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I want to thank all the Pacific Elders for their recent statement supporting a visit to West Papua by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and urging the UN Human Rights Council to pass a motion on West Papua. These Elders have reminded the world's leaders that this visit must take place before the meeting of the G20...

Africa and Oceania lose out in Paris 2024 weightlifting qualifying system

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The International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) has put quality before quantity in its qualification system for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. It has also devised a system that, unlike qualifying for Tokyo, can be exploited by cheats because it allows athletes to "hide away for a year". It was privately dubbed “the North Korean qualifying system” by one of the delegates at...

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‘Stop the violence and killing against Kanaky people’: Vanuatu MPs from Tafea Province

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The eight Members of Vanuatu Parliament from Tafea Province have made a bold and powerful call to the President of the French Republic, Emmanuel...

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Yap to begin canvassing votes for 31 May political status referendum

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The Yap Election Commission in the Federated States of Mironesia (FSM) on Friday will begin tabulating the ballots cast during the 31 May referendum...