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Regional

Young man with cases of donated water
Auckland, NEW ZEALAND — There is an overwhelming sense relief in Tonga with people thankful the death toll is low following last Saturday's volcanic eruption and tsunami. A journalist in Nuku'alofa, Pesi Fonua, has described the event as apocalyptic. He is the father of RNZ Pacific reporter Finau...
Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata'afa
APIA, Samoa — Samoa Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mataafa has declared a nation-wide lockdown starting today, Saturday, Jan. 22 in Apia (Friday in American Samoa) from 6p.m. until 6.p.m. on Monday, Jan. 24 (Sunday in American Samoa) — after 15 passengers who arrived earlier this week on a flight from...
Samoa flag
Apia, SAMOA — Samoa is gearing up for a nationwide lockdown after the number of confirmed coronavirus cases off a flight from Brisbane, on Wednesday increased from 10 to 15. Chairman of the ruling FAST Party and Minister of Agriculture, La'auli Leuatea Schmidt, revealed the increase in positive...
Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata'afa
Apia, SAMOA — Samoa's Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata'afa says the government may cancel scheduled repatriation flights from Australia after the arrivial of 10 positive cases amongst 73 passengers from Brisbane on Wednesday afternoon. She said a scheduled repatriation flight from New Zealand on...
New Zealand Defence Force airplane
Wellington, NEW ZEALAND — The first international relief flight to Tonga since last week's volcanic eruption is due to arrive in the kingdom. A New Zealand Defence Force's C-130 Hercules carrying aid supplies left from Whenuapai airbase just before midday yesterday and was scheduled to land at Fua'...
 A view over Nomuka in Tonga
Wellington, NEW ZEALAND — The Tongan government has confirmed that all houses on the island of Mango were wiped out in the tsunami that followed Saturday's volcanic eruption. It also confirmed that three people are now known to have died: a 65-year-old woman in Mango and a 49-year-old man in Nomuka...
Tonga volcano
Wellington, NEW ZEALAND — Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will hold a media conference this afternoon to address New Zealand's response to the crisis in Tonga. In a post on her Facebook page, Ardern said images of the volcanic eruption were "hugely concerning". She said communication as a result of...
Waterfront in Nuku'alofa, Tonga
Suva, FIJI — Waves generated by a volcanic eruption in Tonga on Saturday have affected several Pacific island nations including New Zealand and Australia. The series of volcanic eruptions were also heard in Samoa, Fiji, Vanuatu, and Cook Islands. Multiple communities in Fiji experienced surges soon...
Agafili Shem Leo
Apia, SAMOA — Travelers to Samoa will soon begin paying for their quarantine costs as the government moves to reduce the expense of coronavirus prevention measures that began two years ago. The Chairman of the National Emergency Operations Committee, Agafili Shem Leo said Cabinet has approved the...
Dr. Naseri and Agafili Shem Leo
Apia, SAMOA — Samoa is considering cash rewards to get people vaccinated as the country struggles to find ways to reach its target of 96 percent of the eligible population to be fully vaccinated. The Chairman of the National Emergency Operations Committee, Agafili Shem Leo told a news conference a...

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