Regional

24th September

Australia’s Optus says up to 10 million customers caught in cyber attack

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australian No. 2 telco Optus, owned by Singapore Telecommunications Ltd, said it will contact up to 10 million customers whose personal details were taken in a “sophisticated” hack, but added no corporate...

Australia seeks stable ties with “great power” China, minister says

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia is aiming for a stable relationship with China despite differences in particular on trade, Australia’s foreign minister said, as she called on China to use its influence as a great power to help end the war in Ukraine. Australia’s ties with its largest trading partner are at a low after disputes...

Fiji PM: 2050 Blue Pacific strategy a vision and hope for a sustainable Pacific

The 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent is more than a framework, it is a vision and hope for a sustainable Pacific. It is also a defiant and unified message of resilience “that represents who we are as proud Pacific people”. Addressing leaders at the launch of the strategy in New York on Thursday...

Britain’s Prince William thanks funeral volunteers and staff

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Prince William and his wife Catherine on Thursday met volunteers and staff involved in Monday’s funeral for Queen Elizabeth, their first in-person public engagement since the event. Hundreds of thousands of people turned out to watch the funeral of Britain’s longest-serving monarch on Monday, packing out streets and public spaces in...

23rd September

How many ants are crawling on Earth? Scientists say 20 quadrillion

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The world’s human population is forecast to surpass 8 billion in the coming months. Compared to ants, that is a mediocre milestone. Researchers have made the most thorough assessment to date of the global population of ants – insects that have colonized almost everywhere on the planet – and the estimated total is...

Palau calls for greater U.S. support as it renegotiates bilateral agreement

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Pacific island state of Palau, which finds itself at the heart of a geostrategic struggle between the United States and China, called on Wednesday for greater U.S. support to build its infrastructure and economy. Palau and two other Pacific island states, the Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia, are...

Al Gore sees the world at ‘tipping point’ for climate action

LONDON (Reuters) -The world is at a “positive tipping point” in the fight against climate change as surging oil and gas costs spur governments to decarbonise faster, former U.S. Vice President and co-founder of Generation Investment Management Al Gore told Reuters. He pointed to the Inflation Reduction Act signed in August, a $430 billion bill...

Paris and New York join climate litigation against TotalEnergies

PARIS (Reuters) – The cities of Paris and New York have joined a coalition of associations and local authorities that are suing oil major TotalEnergies for failing to adequately fight climate change, the coalition said in a statement on Wednesday. “All the signals are in the red. To get out of this and keep the...

Global community urged to support transforming education

The global community has been urged to support transforming education and support efforts to turbocharge transformations across the education sector in Fiji and across the Pacific Islands. Fiji’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Satyendra Prasad made the call at the Transforming Education Summit on Financing Education in New York this week. Mr Prasad said...

Collectors clamor for rare Queen Elizabeth coins and notes

OTTAWA (Reuters) -The death of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth has collectors scrambling to secure rare coins and bills bearing her likeness, even as her portrait is set to remain in circulation for years to come on money throughout the Commonwealth. Coin dealers say demand for rare-issue notes and coins – such as such as a pre-World...

U.S. CDC expects Omicron COVID boosters for kids by mid-October

(Reuters) – The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expects COVID-19 vaccine boosters targeting circulating variants of the virus to be available for children aged 5-11 years by mid-October. The CDC said in a document released on Tuesday that it expects to make a recommendation in early- to mid-October on the use of the...

FDA warns of cybersecurity risk with certain Medtronic insulin pumps

(Reuters) -The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday warned that certain types of insulin pump systems manufactured by Medtronic were vulnerable to cyberattacks and that hackers could potentially hamper insulin delivery by accessing the device. The agency issued a cybersecurity risk alert for the Medtronic MiniMed 600 Series insulin pump system, which has several...

22nd September

World leaders pledge billions to fight AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria on UN sidelines

UNITED NATIONS/NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria on Wednesday reached $14.25 billion pledged as world leaders seek to fight the killer diseases after progress was knocked off course by the COVID-19 pandemic. U.S. President Joe Biden, who hosted the conference in New York on the sidelines of the...

NZ’s Ardern says Christchurch Call anti-online hate project gets new tech investments

WELLINGTON (Reuters) – New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Wednesday announced a new research initiative under a global project aimed at tackling online hate set up in the wake of a mass killing by a white supremacist in Christchurch in 2019. Ardern said in a statement that as part of the Christchurch Call initiative,...

Ambassador Prasad: Countries across Blue Pacific on the move

People, communities, and countries across the Blue Pacific are on the move, building their economies, expanding their trade, and connecting and welcoming the rest of the world. Fiji’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN) Ambassador Satyendra Prasad highlighted this at the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA77) at the UN Headquarters...

U.S. delivers over 25 million COVID boosters; Moderna’s shot in limited supply

(Reuters) -The United States government has sent out over 25 million of the updated COVID-19 booster shots, mostly from Pfizer/BioNTech, as production of the Moderna shot continues to ramp up, a federal health agency said on Tuesday. Some U.S. pharmacies like CVS Health and Walgreens Boots Alliance also reported on Tuesday that government supply of...

Golden Globes broadcast to return to NBC in 2023

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) -NBC will resume its live broadcast of the Golden Globe awards for film and television in January 2023, the network said on Tuesday, citing organizers’ steps to address ethics and a lack of diversity among voters. The Comcast-owned network said it had committed to airing the show for one year as part...

21st September

As national mourning period ends, 250,000 viewed Queen’s lying-in-state

LONDON (Reuters) – Some 250,000 mourners filed past Queen Elizabeth’s coffin at Westminster Hall in London during her lying-in-state, the government said on Tuesday, as the nation’s mourning period ended. On Monday, the world’s gaze had fallen on London as the queen was laid to rest after her 70-year reign in a dazzling show of...

Marshall Islands urges U.S. to better address nuclear legacy, climate

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – The president of the Marshall Islands on Tuesday welcomed what he called progress towards a new association agreement with the United States, but said it is vital to better address the legacy of U.S. nuclear testing and climate change. David Kabua made the remarks at the annual United Nations General Assembly...

China plans easier border entry rules for some foreign tourists

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s government issued draft rules aimed at making it easier for some foreigners to enter China for visits to tourism sites along the Chinese border. Travel groups organised by tour agencies in border areas in China can choose their port of entry and exit “flexibly”, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism said...

Fiji kava distributor expands network to Australia

Grog lovers in Australia will be thrilled to know that Lami Kava’s lewena and waka products are now available in packs of 100g and 50g in the domestic market. The collaboration with Lami Kava will see HiLands Foods be the sole distributor of this premium and quality noble kava varieties. General Manager for HiLands Food...

U.S. states ask appeals court to reinstate Facebook lawsuit

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A big group of U.S. states, led by New York, argued to an appeals court Monday that it should reinstate an antitrust lawsuit against Meta’s Facebook because of ongoing harm from the company’s actions and because the states had not waited too long to file their complaint. Barbara Underwood, solicitor general of...

Global climate goals threatened by lack of clean tech collaboration – IEA

LONDON (Reuters) – Global efforts to reduce emissions and curb rising temperatures are threatened by a lack of collaboration between countries in sharing and developing new technology, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in a report on Tuesday. Major economies around the world such as the United States, and European countries are seeking to reach...

Blinken to host ‘Blue Pacific’ event amid competition with China

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken will host the Partners in the Blue Pacific (PBP) countries on Thursday with the aim of better coordinating assistance to the region in the face of competition from China, a White House official said. The group was formed in June and includes the United States, Australia, Japan,...

NASA’s InSight lander detects space rocks as they slam into Mars

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Mars, by virtue of its tenuous atmosphere and proximity to our solar system’s asteroid belt, is far more vulnerable than Earth to being struck by space rocks – one of the many differences between the two planetary neighbors. Scientists are now gaining a fuller understanding of this Martian trait, with help from...

Greenpeace takes legal action over EU’s ‘green’ label for gas and nuclear

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Greenpeace and other environmental campaigners have launched legal challenges against the European Commission over its decision to include natural gas and nuclear energy in the EU’s list of “green” investments. They argue the European Union violated its own climate laws by doing this, citing the greenhouse gas emissions produced by gas power...

20th September

Oil edges up as supply woes outweigh demand and rate hike worries

HOUSTON (Reuters) -Oil prices edged slightly higher in volatile trading on Monday, as worries of tight supplies outweighed fears that global demand could slow due to a strong U.S. dollar and possible large increases to interest rates. Brent crude for November rose 65 cents, or 0.7%, to $92 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate...

World bids farewell to Queen Elizabeth from cafes and consulates

HONG KONG/SYDNEY (Reuters) -In Hong Kong, hundreds kept up with Queen Elizabeth’s funeral on their phones as they queued for hours to pay their tributes. In Sydney, Australia, customers packed into pubs to watch the ceremony on screens. And in Paris, France, bar owner Thibaud Dupont showed off his new tattoo of the monarch on...

EU plans to upgrade its Paris Agreement climate target – document

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union plans to raise its target to tackle global warming under the Paris climate agreement, although the upgrade is unlikely to happen in time for this year’s U.N. climate summit, according to a draft document seen by Reuters. A draft of the EU’s negotiating mandate for the COP27 summit in...

Fiji PM joins world leaders at Queen Elizabeth’s royal funeral

Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama mourned alongside world leaders and thousands of others at the Westminster Hall last night (Fiji time) as he paid his respect to the late Queen Elizabeth II on behalf of the Fijian people. He later signed the official condolence book at Lancaster House conveying the prayers and well-wishes of all...

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