Pacific News

French journalists in Papua convicted, but will be freed on Monday

Thomas Dandois and Valentine Bourrat

Reports from Indonesia say the two French journalists have been convicted for misusing their tourist visas to work in Papua but will be freed on Monday.

PNG Police deny shooting man in Mt Hagen riot


Order has been restored in the Papua New Guinea city of Mt Hagen after a large fire and looting on Wednesday night.

Fiji's suspension from Pacific Islands Forum is lifted

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The chair of the Pacific Islands Forum, Palau's President, Tommy Remengesau, has announced Fiji's suspension from the Forum has been lifted.

ICC asked to probe Australia's asylum policy

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An Australian politician has asked the International Criminal Court to investigate the Australian government's treatment of asylum seekers, citing crimes against humanity.

Private search begins for man missing off American Samoa coast

Cyrus Suleman, brother of 17-year-old pilot Haris Suleman about to toss a wreath at sea, in honor of his brother and still missing father, Babar Suleman.

An underwater search by a private company hired by the family of a father and son whose small plane crashed off the coast of American Samoa three months ago has begun.

Number of candidates standing in Tonga's 2nd election drops

Parliament buildings in Nuku'alofa, Tonga

There has been a marked falloff in the number of candidates standing in the elections in Tonga in late November.

Fiji reports on ministers' salaries questioned

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The Fiji Labour Party leader says he doubts that a complete picture on ministers' salaries has emerged in the recently released Auditor General's reports.

Interim injuction on contempt proceedings against PNGs PM

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O'Neill.

The Supreme Court in Papua New Guinea has stayed contempt proceedings against the prime minister and members of his staff.

PNG police justify raid on fraud unit

The Police Commissioner of Papua New Guinea, Geoffrey Vaki.

Papua New Guinea's Acting Deputy Police Commissioner has justified a raid on the fraud unit, saying its head had failed to comply with police orders.

Tonga's Democrats well placed early for poll

Tonga MP Akilisi Pohiva

Nominations for next month's elections in Tonga end this afternoon, and already there are signs this poll will be markedly different from the last one.

PNG's Oil Search promises bigger dividends

Papua New Guinea, money, kina

Papua New Guinea oil producer, Oil Search, is promising higher dividend payments to shareholders after lifting production 81 percent during the September quarter.

Solomons govt asked to help at Gold Ridge

Solomon Islands Prime Minister Gordon Darcy Lilo.

The Australian miner, St Barbara, says the Solomon Islands government is best placed to determine the future of the Gold Ridge mine.

Hollande's New Caledonia visit takes shape

President Francois Hollande.

The French president will visit New Caledonia after attending the G-20 summit in Brisbane in mid-November.

Papua prosecution seeks jail for French journalists

Thomas Dandois and Valentine Bourrat

Prosecutors are demanding four months' imprisonment for the two French journalists accused of misusing their tourist visas in Papua.

Huge drop in Marshalls copra production

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There's been a huge drop in copra production in the Marshall Islands this year.

Australian Foreign Minister set to visit Fiji

Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop.

Fiji's Ministry of Information says Australian Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop will meet senior Fijian government officials when she visits Suva at the end of October.

Fiji tourism figures up for September

A Fiji Airways plane

Tourism Fiji says visitor arrivals in September showed an increase of 4.5 percent over the same month last year.

Fiji audit shows blatant financial mismanagement - Chaudhry

Fiji Labour Party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry

The Fiji Labour Party leader says the Auditor General's report into government spending of the last seven years details blatant financial mismanagement and breaches of law.

PNG gas find by Interoil

Sirinumu Dam, PNG

The Canadian company InterOil has discovered hydrocarbons at a well in Papua New Guinea's Gulf Province.

Airline eyes American Samoa's Manu'a service

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The principals of a new airline planning to offer flights from American Samoa's Tutuila to Manu'a, have met with the Governor, Lolo Moliga, in Honolulu.

Miner says Solomons Govt must help

Gold Ridge mine, Solomon Islands

Solomon Islands gold miner, Melbourne based St Barbara, says the Solomons Government is critical to ensuring a tailings dam does not burst.

Swains Islanders called on to elect representative

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American Samoa's Election Commissioner is calling Swains Islanders to elect their representative to the House of Representatives.

Nauru regains access to bank accounts

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Nauru will be given back access of its bank accounts after Australian courts dismissed an appeal by an American investment fund.

Sport: PNG cricket to play first ever ODIs

Papua New Guinea cricket coach Dipak Patel

Papua New Guinea's national cricket team is set to make history next month, playing its first ever One Day International series from 8-9 November in Australia.

Sport: Guam hosts Micronesia Cup

Teams practice for Micronesia Cup.

The biggest regional outrigger canoe race in Micronesia starts today in Guam.

Sport: Cooks football team prepares to take on PNG

14 year old Cook Islands International Moeroa Harmon.

The Cook Islands Women's Football Coach Jimmy Katoa says their first match against Papua New Guinea in the OFC Nations Cup is going to be extremely tough.

Sport: Samoan league players fined heavily

Samoa Rugby League Logo

Reni Maitua, Tautau Moga and Sauaso Sue have each been fined just under $US9,000 for their involvement in a Brisbane night-club fight last weekend.

New hospital hopes in Marshalls

The Marshall Islands coast

The Marshall Islands Health Ministry says it has plans for the construction of a new hospital costing US$77 million in Majuro.

Fewer candidates in Solomons poll

The Solomon Islands flag

The Solomon Islands Electoral Commission says fewer candidates have registered for next month's national elections than the previous poll in 2010.

Fijian Elections Office records criticised

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Fiji's Auditor General says the Elections Office failed to keep proper records around the employment of voter registration clerks which increased the risk of fraud.

Solomons' miner told tailings threat its responsibility

Gold Ridge mine, Solomon Islands

Solomon Islands says the onus is on Australian mine operator, St Barbara, to sort out any threat should the Gold Ridge tailings dam bursts.

Samoa Media Council bill debated in Parliament

A'eau Peniamina

Samoa's Prime Minister, Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, says the proposed Media Council legislation has been long overdue and should have been in place in the past years.

No police comment on PNG raid

The Police Commissioner of Papua New Guinea, Geoffrey Vaki.

There has been no police comment in Papua New Guinea following yesterday's raid of the the National Fraud and Anti Corruption office by armed police from another unit.

Tonga rejects PSA threat claims

The National Shield of Tonga

The Tonga government says claims by Public Services International it is threatening and repressing public servants are completely unfounded.

Fiji reports pinpoint salary overspending

Government buildings, Suva

Reports from Fiji say the recently released Auditor General's reports reveal overspending on salaries by some ministries.

Human rights lawyer fears for Nauru refugees

Nauru is trying to overturn a decision that froze the country's bank accounts.

An Australian human rights advocate says he fears some asylum seekers on Nauru will agree to be resettled in Cambodia out of desperation.

Vanuatu chief gives Ambrym title back

240414. Photo RNZ. Vanuatu. Port Vila, Port Vila harbour, Iririki, tropics, sailing, yachting

Custom chiefs on Ambrym Island in Vanuatu have taken back a paramount chiefly title they had wrongly bestowed on the chairman of the National Council of Chiefs, Chief Seni Mao Tirsupe.

Cooks minister denies bribing Mitiaro voters

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The Cook Islands Finance Minister denies development plans for Mitiaro are bribing voters in the upcoming by-election.

Firebird appeal against Nauru dismissed

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An Australian court has dismissed an appeal by a US fund management company which has been trying to recover 27 million US dollars owed by Nauru in government bonds.

Visa rules at centre of Papua trial

Valentine Bourrat and Thomas Dandois

An Indonesian expert witness says the two French journalists on trial in Papua for misuse of a tourist visa were involved in journalistic activities as defined by law.

NZ union backed charity educates Fiji workers

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A charity backed by New Zealand unions is helping Fiji workers learn about their rights as weakened Fiji unions struggle with restrictive decrees.

Legal snags slow Tahiti tourism project

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The French Polynesian president, Edouard Fritch, says legal issues about the tendering process need to be resolved for the launch of the Mahana Beach Resort.

Public Services International concerned about Tonga workers

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Public Services International is expressing serious concerns with what it calls the ongoing threats and repression against public servants in Tonga.

Cooks budget eyes tourism, health and celebrations

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The Cook Islands Minister of Finance says tourism, health and the 50-year independence celebrations will be the focus of the coming year's budget.

Pacific Red Cross leaders agree on joint approach

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Red Cross leaders in the Pacific have for the first time decided on a joint approach for the region, ahead of several major international conferences in the coming year.

French Polynesia mayor forced out for 18 months

220414. Photo RNZ. French Polynesia. Flags at territorial assembly in French Polynesia

The administrative court in French Polynesia has ordered the removal of the mayor of Mahina over a formal irregularity during his election campaign.

Fijian player named in England rugby squad

Bath's Fijian winger Semesa Rokoduguni.

England have named Fiji-born winger Semesa Rokoduguni in their rugby squad for November's internationals.

Sport: Samoa league coach looks to move on from nightclub incident

Samoa Rugby League Logo

The Samoa rugby league coach says the team has responded positively to the night-club incident which led to three players being stood down ahead of their opening Four Nations match against England on Saturday.

Sport: PNG Football downplays home advantage

Papua New Guinea flag.

The Papua New Guinea Football General Secretary Dimirit Mileng says home advantage will only take his country's womens team so far.

Sport: Samoa league coach expects brutal encounter

Toa Samoa Rugby League Team

The Samoa rugby league coach is expecting a confrontational beginning to the Four Nations tournament on Saturday.

PNG fraud office raided

The Police Commissioner of Papua New Guinea, Geoffrey Vaki.

Media reports in Papua New Guinea say the National Fraud and Anti Corruption office was raided by armed police from another unit.