Australia

Kangaroos to face Kiwis in Wollongong in October

The announcement of the trans-Tasman Test provides the first details of the international calendar which is expected to include an Oceania series and Great Britain Lions tour to New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.

It will be the first time the Kangaroos have hosted the Kiwis in Australia since the mid-season ANZAC Test was cancelled in 2017.

The two nations have only met once since, with New Zealand defeating Australia in Auckland last October.

Australian stripper under fire for drinking beer from didgeridoo

Video posted to Instagram shows Bambi Le Fist drinking out of the instrument during Australia Day celebrations.

She was wearing a floral bikini and shouted "straya" after finishing. Perth model Cassy Walker filmed the video and quickly faced criticism for the stunt, the Daily Mail reports.

"This is so disrespectful to our culture," one person wrote. "This is wrong on so many levels."

Ms Walker's Instagram is now private and cannot be accessed unless she has given people permission to view it.

India defeat Australia in ODI decider

Set 231 to win Friday's decider, India chased their target with four balls to spare to claim a 2-1 series victory and cap off a summer of unprecedented triumph.

Superstar veteran Dhoni again steered India to victory, scoring an unbeaten 87 off 114 balls - his third fifty from as many games - to repeat his match-winning heroics in Adelaide.

In a gripping finish, Dhoni was dropped on 74 by Aaron Finch at mid-off, then partner Kedar Jadhav (61 not out) barely survived a run-out attempt at the non- striker's end.

Australia's Foreign Ministry appoints new head of Pacific office

Ewen McDonald, who is currently Australia's High Commissioner to New Zealand the Cook Islands and Niue, will take up the role.

Foreign Minister Marise Payne said the office, which was announced in November, will help Australia to better engage with the Pacific.

"This will build on our already deep relationship with the region and support the delivery of the Australian Government's package of innovative new initiatives in the Pacific, including labour mobility and infrastructure financing," Ms Payne said in a statement.

 

     

How one heatwave killed 'a third' of a bat species in Australia

The animals, also known as spectacled fruit bats, were unable to survive in temperatures which exceeded 42C.

In the city of Cairns, locals saw bats toppling from trees into backyards, swimming pools and other locations.

Wildlife rescuers found surviving animals clumped together, usually on branches closer to the ground.

"It was totally depressing," one rescuer, David White, told the BBC.

Last week, researchers from Western Sydney University finalised their conclusion that about 23,000 spectacled flying foxes died in the event on 26 and 27 November.

Australia deports Pasifika people to NZ who have never set foot here: 'It's wrong'

Two men deported from Australia landed in Christchurch in the past two months, stepping foot on New Zealand soil for the first time.

One man, Fofoa I Vaoese Toese Pei, was born in Samoa. He isn't fully aware of how he qualifies as a New Zealand citizen.

The other, Arona Pere, was born in the Cook Islands, and has been sent to New Zealand because of the New Zealand citizenship that comes with that.

They are part of a growing list of people being deported from Australia to New Zealand.

Mr Toese Pei moved to Australia from Samoa when he was 10-years-old.

Australia to expand labour scheme to all Pacific countries

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and foreign minister Marise Payne say the current cap of 2-thousand places will be lifted, although the new limit is not a given.

Talks to allow Papua New Guinea to join the scheme have also been confirmed.

Australia will also establish a new Pacific office within its foreign ministry.

Australian Clinical Dermatologist helps out at Samoa hospital

Australian clinical dermatologist, Dr Anthony Hall attended to various skin cases at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital Outpatients Clinic.

The cases ranged from rashes, pigmented lesions and hair loss.

Dr Hall’s visit was arranged by the Australian Government funded Pacific Islands Programme (PIP).

National Health Service Dermatology Trainee Dr Helena Va’a Fuimaono was assigned to work with Dr Hall during his visit.

Australia to increase military and police cooperation in Pacific

On Thursday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison unveiled a new foreign policy strategy for the Pacific region, including increased military cooperation.

But Defence Minister Christopher Pyne told Fairfax Media this strategy also includes a new vessel to operate semi-permanently in the south west Pacific.

He said the ship could assist with preparation for and response to natural disasters and other resilience support.

Australia will also strengthen its links with police forces in the Pacific.

Australia lifting Pacific work scheme numbers

The assistant minister for international development and the Pacific, Anne Ruston, said under Australia's pledge to step up its relationship with Pacific nations it recognised that labour mobility was a key issue for them.

This was reflected in the 40 percent annual growth of the seasonal worker scheme, while a new Pacific labour scheme would also bring in 2000 workers over the next year, she said.