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PACIFIC NATIONS

Ruins at Vakaloa Resort in Tonga
PACIFIC ISLANDS — A powerful cyclone that hit the Pacific Island nations this week bringing death, injuries and destruction cannot be allowed to disrupt containment efforts against the spread of the coronavirus, officials in the region said. Cyclone Harold, a Category 5 storm with winds in excess...
Guam Governor Lou Leon Guerrero
PACIFIC ISLANDS — More travel restrictions and measures have been imposed around the Pacific as cases in the region continue to increase. People in French Polynesia have been told to stay at home from midnight for at least 15 days as the coronavirus outbreak keeps spreading. At a briefing this...
A residential area of Fiji pictured after Cyclone Winston in 2018
Sydney, AUSTRALIA — While the rest of the world wakes up to the climate emergency, people in Oceania have been living it  "for decades", a new report says.  In low-lying nations such as Tonga, Samoa, Papua New Guinea and Fiji, many have already died from climate-related extremes.  Caritas Oceania...
74-year-old Teaga Esekia,
Vaitupu, TUVALU — For 74-year-old Teaga Esekia, a chief from the Tuvalu island of Vaitupu, the ocean is a lifeblood. "Tuvaluans, they have different types of months, not like January to December," said the elderly but agile man, who still climbs coconut trees every day. "They have their seasons...
Britain's Prince Charles, takes a drink with Chief Sine Mao Tirsupe, President of the Malvatumauri National Council of Chiefs, during a visit to the Chief's nakamal, as he visits the South Pacific island of Vanuatu, April 7, 2018. [Photo: Pool via Reuters/Steve Parsons]
Sydney, AUSTRALIA — Western countries will step up economic contacts with Pacific nations to lever them away from China’s spreading sphere of influence, overtures to be backed by increased military surveillance and intelligence operations. As unease grows over Beijing’s strategic objectives and...