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Lebanese Christian party offers idea to resolve dispute over new cabinet

BEIRUT (Reuters) – A party founded by Lebanon’s Christian president made a proposal to end a dispute that has blocked the formation of a new cabinet and threatened a French drive to lift the country...

Authorities work to remove wreckage

Police and firefighters are now working on removing the wreckage of the car that veered off Tacirua Settlement this afternoon that is also believed to have killed two people. Police officers have started interviewing witnesses at the settlement. A police truck and an ambulance have transported the bodies to the hospital. Families and relatives started...

Uncle jailed to 12 years for raping niece

A 56-year-old unemployed man who sexually abused his nine-year-old niece for more than a year has been sentenced to 12 years imprisonment. The man was convicted of one count of indecent assault and one count of digital rape after he pleaded guilty to the charge. The court was told the man gave a $2 coin...

Bodies retrieved from mangled car

Police and firefighters have managed to retrieve the two bodies that were trapped in a car that veered off the road at Tacirua Settlement this afternoon. It is believed the two died at the scene. Family members and relatives of the victims have arrived at the scene. There is a long line of traffic on...

Ethiopia files terrorism charges against leading opposition activist

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Ethiopia has filed terrorism charges against a prominent media mogul and opposition politician from the Oromo ethnic group, Jawar Mohammed, the attorney general’s office said on Saturday. Jawar, founder of the Oromiya Media Network and a member of the Oromo Federalist Congress party, was arrested in June amid the widespread unrest...

Police, firefighters try to retrieve bodies at scene of accident

Police officers and a team of more than 10 firefighters are trying to retrieve two bodies from a hybrid car that veered off a hill in Tacirua settlement this afternoon. It is understood that three passengers have been taken to hospital in the last hour, while police officers are trying to retrieve the other two...

ROC market rocks downtown Suva

Carnavon Street and Loftus Street was abuzz with activities this morning as shoppers and small business entrepreneurs made use of the opportunity of the ROC Market in Suva today. It started at 9am and there are more than 40 businesses taking part this year. From food stalls to craft, bags, clothes, jewellery and art, and...

Polluted stretch of Manila Bay gets fake white sand makeover

MANILA (Reuters) – Residents of the Philippines’ capital on Saturday flocked to an artificial white sand beach that the government has transformed from a polluted stretch of shoreline to mark International Coastal Cleanup day. Despite opposition from environmental campaigners, President Rodrigo Duterte’s government has filled a 500-meter stretch of coastline beside the U.S. embassy in...

Man jailed for raping granddaughter

A 67-year-old man who raped his 11-year-old granddaughter has been sentenced to nine years and one month by the High Court in Suva. High Court judge Justice Riyaz Hamza told the man he took advantage of the complainant’s vulnerability, helplessness and naivety. “You have exposed the innocent mind of a child to sexual activity at...

Accused after personal items

The personal items of a man facing drug-related charges are yet to be returned to him, the High Court in Lautoka was told this week. Marc Winston’s defence counsel, Adrienne Ali, informed Justice Chamath Morais that despite writing to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) several times, they did not have the...

Hungary extends loan moratorium for some borrowers until mid 2021 – Orban

BUDAPEST (Reuters) – Hungary has decided to extend a moratorium on loan repayments for targeted groups of households and also for some companies until the middle of 2021, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said in a video posted on his official Facebook page on Saturday. Orban said families with children, retired borrowers, unemployed and those in...

Chaudhry: Father Barr fought for the rights of the poor

Social economist and human rights activist Father Kevin Barr was someone who fought for the rights of the poor in this country at the time of the 1987 coup, said former prime minister and Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry. Responding to news of the Catholic priest’s death, Mr Chaudhry said he was deeply saddened...

Police assures SODELPA its meetings on private properties will not be stopped in future

Fijian Police have assured the Social Democratic Liberal Party that its meetings on private properties will not be stopped in the future. Police spokeswoman Ana Naisoro attributed the actions of Rakiraki police to “misunderstanding and miscommunication”. “The party executives have been informed and assured that it won’t happen again,” she said. “It was an issue...

Villagers grateful for water distribution

More than 500,000 litres of water was distributed this week to villages in Yasawa, Mamanuca and Malolo. According to the Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management, a team was deployed for 15 days carting water to villages affected by the dry spell experienced in the Western Division. The team onboard the MV...

CAAF inspectors investigate training plane’s landing incident

Inspectors from the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji (CAAF) flew to Kadavu yesterday to investigate an incident where a Pacific Flying School Cessna 172 plane went off the runway while landing at the Vunisea Airport. Pacific Flying School director Tim Joyce said no injuries were sustained by the trainer or the two trainee pilots. “I...

Japanese students allowed to return to classes in Fiji

Japanese students enrolled with Free Bird Institute Ltd (FBIL) in Nadi have been allowed to return to classes in Fiji after the company was given conditional approval from the COVID-19 Risk Mitigation Taskforce. According to the company, the special approval was granted through the Specific Request under Significant Economic Value category of the Fijian COVID...

Mill downtime affects crushing

The Fiji Sugar Corporation’s (FSC) Lautoka mill recorded 23 hours of mechanical stoppages caused by problems encountered in the front end of the powerhouse. In its latest weekly crushing update, FSC stated while the problem was rectified within the week, outside stops of three hours were directly associated with rain which brought relief after a...

Lebanon’s army finds firework cache at devastated Beirut port

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Lebanon’s army said it had found 1.3 tonnes of fireworks during a search of Beirut port, which was devastated last month in a huge blast that was blamed on a large quantity of chemicals kept in poor condition. The army said in a statement, released on its website on Friday, that 1,320...

State mum on Fiji Day celebrations, says Chaudhry

Fiji is three weeks shy of celebrating one of the country’s biggest events as a nation, and yet, there is still no word from Government about how we are marking our 50th anniversary as an independent State. This was the view expressed by former prime minister and Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry in a...

67-year-old artist shares 30 years of experience

In her 30 years as an artist, Reapi Tuitokova Blyde has done and seen it all. And unlike many Pacific artists, the Suvalailai, Rewa, native decided to enhance her natural talent by getting a degree in artistry at Auckland University, a feat she accomplished 20 years ago. But after obtaining her degree, Ms Blyde was...

‘Girl recovering well in hospital’

A four-year-old girl who was hit by a tree trunk felled by soldiers at an informal settlement in Nabua is out of the CWM Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit. The Republic of Fiji Military Forces Commander Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto said the girl was recovering well and the house destroyed by the tree was rebuilt on...

India parliament session may be cut short as COVID-19 cases among lawmakers rise – sources

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s parliament session that began this week is likely to be cut short after 30 lawmakers were found infected with the coronavirus, two senior parliament officials said, as the number of cases in the country rose to 5.3 million. The Indian parliament met for the first time in six months on...

Access to accounts: Public to examine audited books of political parties

The public will soon have access to the audited accounts of all political parties in the country, says the Registrar of Political Parties Mohammed Saneem. He said this in a statement where he gave the National Federation Party until next Wednesday to provide him with receipt books for 2016. He also said the party had...

Political parties condemn road group

Two political parties have strongly condemned China Railway No.5 Engineering Group Fiji Ltd for sending workers home while roads continue to deteriorate on a daily basis. The Fiji Labour Party (FLP) and National Federation Party (NFP) also questioned the firm’s excuse that it was not familiar with Fijian labour laws and offered this as the...

RKS headboy told to return to school

Ratu Kadavulevu School head boy Mosese Qionimacawa has been told to return to school, according to his mother Vasiti Qionimacawa. She claimed a senior Education Ministry official called her on Wednesday, September 16, to relay the decision after her son completed a counseling session. Mrs Qionimacawa said she strongly supported former education ministers Ro Teimumu...

Students urged to take advantage of school break

Students have been urged to take advantage of their school break which begins next week. While speaking in Nadi yesterday, Minister for Education Rosy Akbar said students should ensure they rested during the one week break. “Today is the last day of school and I want you to have a good rest during your break,...

Assange lawyer says she saw Trump ally offer to arrange pardon

LONDON (Reuters) – A lawyer for Julian Assange told a London court on Friday that she was present when an ally of U.S. President Donald Trump offered to arrange a pardon for the WikiLeaks founder in return for information that would “benefit President Trump politically”. Australian-born Assange, 49, is fighting to avoid being sent to...

Missing person: Police request information for missing teenager

Fijian Police are requesting information to help them locate the whereabout of 15-year-old Jioji Bale who was reported missing at the Lami Police Station. The teenager was last seen having lunch at his home in Kalekana Settlement on September 13. Bale was last seen wearing a blue vest with a white stripe on the edge...

Teenage brothers’ bodies found

The bodies of two brothers Shalveen and Shivnil Singh who went missing along the Vuda Point River in Lautoka have been found. After an exhaustive 48-hour search by police officers and family members, the bodies of the teenagers were found early this morning. According to family members, one of the alleged drowning victims was found...

Guatemalan president and minister have coronavirus, cabinet to test

GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) – Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei revealed on Friday that he had tested positive for the coronavirus, just as the Central American country was easing draconian travel restrictions imposed months ago to contain infections. “The coronavirus test result was positive,” Giammattei told a local radio station. The government later confirmed the minister for...

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