Archive - Sunday, July 23, 2017

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UK REOPENS AID TO FIJI

By Jillian Hicks

SUVA, Fiji Islands (December 29, 2001 – Sun)---The United Kingdom will once again consider applications for funding for small projects from the Fiji Government in the areas of good governance, human rights, conflict prevention and the environment, says its Foreign Office Minister Denis MacShane.

But he said Britain will replace their sanctions if Fiji does not meet its constitutional requirements.

Following the decision of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) on December 20 to lift Fiji’s suspension from the Councils of the Commonwealth, Mr. MacShane said they would also drop their blanket ban on joint military exercises and visits to Fiji by Royal Navy ships.

Possible cooperation in this area will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and will be approved only where they see benefit to ordinary Fijians or to Fiji’s UN peacekeeping forces.

"In keeping with national and EU criteria, we will continue not to issue export...

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POLICE ADMIT TO DIFFICULTIES IN SOLVING ELUAY’S MURDER IN PAPUA

JAKARTA, Indonesia (December 28, 2001 – Jakarta Post/Joyo Indonesian News/TAPOL)---National Police chief Gen. Da'i Bachtiar admitted Friday that the police had encountered difficulties in uncovering evidence in its investigation into the Nov. 11 murder of Irian Jaya independence activist Theys Hiyo Eluay.

"There are no grounds for the police to be afraid or reluctant to uncover the murder of Theys Hiyo Eluay," Da'i said at the National Police Headquarters, as quoted by El-Shinta radio station.

"The only problem is obstacles to uncovering the evidence," he added.

He said that the police could not base their investigation into the murder case on assumptions, but on hard evidence.

There has been speculation that the police have found it difficult to unravel the case as it involved clandestine operations in the military.

Theys was found dead in the late evening of Nov. 11 after having attended a National Heroes commemoration at the Jayapura...

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NO OFFICIAL WORD YET ON MANGAIA AID PACKAGE

By Jonathan Harwood

AVARUA, Rarotonga, Cook Islands (December 22 2001 – Cook Islands News)---No government aid has yet been sent to Mangaia as the island struggles to clean up after the recent devastating floods.

The Island Secretary says she has had no word from Rarotonga on an aid package since Cyclone Trina struck the island at the start of the month.

However Arthur Taripo, the Prime Minister’s Deputy Chief of Staff, said yesterday that aid totaling NZ$ 144,000 (US$ 59,760), including NZ$ 50,000 (US$ 20,750) from the government, was to be put at the disposal of Mangaia.

He said that as food stocks were satisfactory at the moment food aid would be sent next year, when the taro shortage begins to bite.

In the meantime, Mangaia is looking forward to the holiday period according to Island Secretary Tuaine Tuara.

"We are just beginning to dry out. We are not quite dry yet," she said. "Things are still pretty grim.

"At this stage we...

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CHILEAN SHIP "ESMERALDA" IN TAHITI

PAPE‘ETE, Tahiti, French Polynesia (December 31, 2001 – Tahitipresse)---After a five month Pacific tour, the Chilean tall ship " Esmeralda " arrived in French Polynesia Thursday with 327 crewmembers aboard.

The ship, coming from New Zealand, moored in Moorea Lagoon for two days before sailing to Tahiti on Saturday.

Tahitians will have the opportunity to visit the ship for three days in a row, from December 30th to January 1st.

The four-masted ship, which started sailing in 1953, will leave Tahiti January 3rd for Rapa Nui (Easter Island), a territory of Chile.

The "Esmeralda" left Valparaiso, Chile July 15th and made port calls in Lima (Peru), Acapulco (Mexico), Hawai‘i (United States), Tokyo (Japan), Pusan (South Korea), Shanghai (China), Sydney (Australia), Auckland and Wellington (New Zealand).

The "Esmeralda" will return to Chile in February.

For additional reports from Tahiti Press, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links:...

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GUAM TOURIST ARRIVAL RATES SLIDE 46 PERCENT

By Gaynor Dumat-ol Daleno

HAGÅTÑA, Guam (December 29, 2001 – Pacific Daily News)---Guam's tourist numbers plunged 46 percent last month, weighed down primarily by a continued steep drop in arrivals from Japan, where the country's economic woes and fears of overseas travel linger.

The decline means 48,704 fewer tourists visited last month compared with the 105,352 visitors in November last year, according to Guam Visitors Bureau statistics.

GVB has stated it spent $1.4 million on publicity in Japan in early October, but Japanese tourist arrivals slid 55 percent, from 85,265 to 38,090 in November. Visitor arrivals from Japan dropped 56 percent in October.

An August 2001 visitors bureau survey showed Japanese tourists each spent an average of $609 on Guam, so 47,175 fewer Japanese tourists in one month can be translated into about $28 million that didn't go into the island's economy.

The publicity campaign was part of the visitors bureau's $1.6...

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PAPUA NEW GUINEAN RAI WINS UN CLIMATE CHANGE POST

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (December 28, 2001 - The National/PINA Nius Online)---A Papua New Guinean has been appointed to the Bureau of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Senior Foreign Affairs officer Max Rai replaces Ambassador Neroni Slade, of Samoa.

Mr. Rai and five other candidates from the five regions of the world were elected to the bureau by environment ministers from around the world.

Mr. Rai was the nominee of the Alliance of Small Island States, comprising 43 countries located in the Caribbean, Pacific, Indian Ocean and elsewhere.

His appointment is for two years.

Foreign Affairs Minister Dr. John Waiko said: "It is a honor for PNG to represent the interests of small island nations in the important area of climate change.

"PNG is experiencing the direct impact of climate change, with the submerging of a number of small atoll islands and the disappearance of coastlines in some parts of the country."...

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UNITED NATIONS SO FAR REJECTS FIJI PROPOSAL FOR NEW PEACEKEEPING ASSIGNMENTS

By Davila Waqausa

SUVA, Fiji Islands (December 29, 2001 – Sun)---Fiji’s proposal to the United Nations to have peacekeeping troops deployed to East Timor has not been accepted.

And if Fiji is going to be asked by the United Nations to be part of the peacekeeping process in Afghanistan, it has to have consultations with the commander of the military forces and then be sanctioned by the Government.

This was disclosed by Permanent Secretary for Home Affairs Major General George Konrote yesterday.

When Fiji troops were told of their demobilization next year from Lebanon in the Middle East, the Government approached the UN for alternative conflict areas for deployment.

Major General Konrote said the Government’s proposal was not accepted by the UN because it is downsizing.

The Government was actually looking at deploying more forces for peacekeeping duties to East Timor, but that was rejected.

"The United Nations, yes, we had done that...

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COOK ISLANDS POLICE HELPING BUST INTERNATIONAL SCAM

By Jonathan Harwood

AVARUA, Rarotonga, Cook Islands (December 22 2001 - Cook Islands News)---The Cook Islands police may have smashed an international crime ring, wanted by the FBI.

Plain clothed officers swooped into an Avarua restaurant Thursday afternoon and arrested a 34-year-old man traveling on a South African passport.

He is allegedly part of an elaborate sting operation that has so far evaded security forces, including the FBI, all over the world.

The arrested man, Albert Tshabalala, is believed to have tried to trick wealthy businessmen and church groups out of large sums of money by claiming to be in possession of millions of U.S. dollars in a "micro-film carbonated" form.

He has gotten them to hand over cash to help him convert the notes into legal tender before disappearing.

A search of his room at a hotel on Rarotonga uncovered several bottles of chemicals and a suitcase containing apparently false dollar bills with a value of...

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UNITY MINISTER WAENA APPEALS FOR SOLOMON ISLANDS MILITANTS TO COOPERATE

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (December 28, 2001 – Radio Australia)---Former militant groups in the Solomon Islands have been asked to cooperate in implementing a rehabilitation project for ex-combatants, allowing them to return to productive work.

The appeal was issued by the Solomon Islands Minister of National Unity, Reconciliation and Peace, Nathaniel Waena.

The minister wants the help and understanding of former members of the Malaita Eagle Force and the Isatabu freedom Movement in addressing the rehabilitation program’s goals.

He said cooperation with his ministry will ensure that the program is carried out in a satisfactory way to everyone involved, allowing the country to return to normal.

Mr. Waena also announced that future lost property compensation payments will be broken down into provincial blocks.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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PAPUA NEW GUINEA CARNAGE: 13 MORE DIE

IN MENDI, 36 CONFIRMED DEAD

Thirteen more people were killed in the tribal fight in Mendi, Southern Highlands over the weekend and Christmas period, the Catholic Church said yesterday.

December 28, 2001 – Post-Courier)---The death toll is now a confirmed 36, but could be more. Tribes are not revealing the exact number of deaths in the two weeks of tribal warfare in the Southern Highlands capital.

On Saturday, nine people were killed on both sides of the warring Unjumap and Wagia tribes. Two women from the Wagia tribe were shot dead and their bodies split in half by blows from bush knives and axes.

The women, painted with ashes and dressed in banana leaves, were transporting food to combatants in the battlefield when they were surrounded and shot dead by enemy tribesmen.

The Archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Mendi, Steven Reichert, said it was difficult to determine the exact number of people killed so far.

He said it was a new and...

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