New Zealand

Samoan short film selected in NZ competition final

The competition is part of the annual New Zealand International Film Festival and this year's finalists have been selected by the Oscar winning film-maker Dame Jane Campion.

Esther Mauga's Our Father - Lo Matou Tamā is among the six finalists chosen.

Dame Jane said she "appreciated the subtle telling of this family drama" and highlighted the performance of Samara Autagavaia as the conflicted elder sister.

Writer/director Esther Mauga says Jane Campion is a huge role model.

Australia, NZ voted onto Pacific Games Council

The Trans Tasman neighbours were first invited to compete in four sports at the 2015 Games in Papua New Guinea, with that number doubling to eight sports for the current Games in Samoa.

But the CEO of the Pacific Games Council, Andrew Minogue said under that arrangement both countries, who also took a limited part in the 2017 Mini Games, had no standing at all in the Council framework and constitution.

"What we did today was we formally admitted both Olympic Committees as associate members of the Council, so they now have a much easier pathway to competing. "

New Zealand stun India to reach World Cup final

India's top order collapsed as the Black Caps reached the showpiece match for the second World Cup running, leaving the dreams of Virat Kohli's side and their army of followers in tatters.

With play having carried into the reserve day after rain on Tuesday, the Black Caps resumed on 211-5 and added another 28 runs for the loss of three wickets in 3.5 overs.

World Cup semi to resume Wednesday

New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat, reaching 211-5 after 46.1 overs when the players were forced off the field at around 14:00 local time (13:00 GMT).

Light but persistent showers continued throughout the afternoon and though the umpires inspected the pitch at 18:10, heavier rain arrived at that point and the covers were summoned back on.

Play had to resume by 18:36 for a conclusion to be reached on Tuesday, with India needing to bat at least 20 overs for a result.

Goals galore as Pacific Games football kicks off

Defending men's champions New Caledonia opened with a 5-0 win over American Samoa before Pool B rivals Solomon Islands upped the ante with a 13-0 thrashing of Tuvalu.

However Bonitos head coach Wim Rijsbergen was not getting carried away with much tougher games still to come.

Christchurch attack: New Zealand launches gun buy-back scheme

More than $208m New Zealand dollars (£108m, $136m), have been set aside to compensate owners of semi-automatic weapons which were banned following the attacks.

The ban was agreed by parliament in April, weeks after the shootings.

In March, a gunman killed 51 people at a mosque and Islamic centre during Friday prayers.

The scheme, which only applies to licensed guns, will last six months meaning people will have until 20 December to hand in their weapons.

New Zealand man jailed for 21 months for sharing Christchurch shooting video

Philip Arps sent the video to 30 people and to a friend, asking for it to be modified to include a "kill count".

Christchurch District Judge Stephen O'Driscoll said Arps held "unrepentant views" towards the Muslim community.

A gunman killed 51 people in the attack on Muslims at a mosque and Islamic centre during Friday prayers in March.

At the Christchurch District Court on Tuesday, Arps pleaded guilty to two charges of distributing objectionable material for sharing footage that was livestreamed to social media during the attack.

The newest tunnel being built under Aucklanders' feet

A tunnel boring machine, named Amiria, has been digging out the last leg of a $400 million Watercare project which will ensure water comes out when Aucklanders turn on a tap.

The tunnel stretches 31km from a set of Watercare reservoirs in Manukau to those atop Khyber Pass.

About midday Thursday, Amiria popped out "bang on" where she was meant to at the top of the Khyber Pass reservoir.

Inside the tunnel will live an earthquake-proof water main with the capability of quenching 25 per cent of the city's thirst everyday.

Christchurch attack: Brenton Tarrant pleads not guilty to all charges

 Brenton Tarrant is charged with the murder of 51 people, 40 counts of attempted murder and one terrorism charge in New Zealand's deadliest peace time mass shooting.

Appearing via video link from prison, the 29-year-old sat in silence as his lawyer read out his plea.

The 15 March attack saw a gunman opened fire on Muslims during Friday prayers.

This is the first time a terrorism charge has been brought in New Zealand.

NZ Pacific communities to drive language promotion

The funds were announced in last week's so-called Wellbeing Budget as part of the launch of a Pacific Language Unit.

Grant Robertson said the unit will be within the Ministry for Pacific Peoples.

He said no government structures will be replicated and the funds will be focused on enhancing Pacific languages and cultures.

Mr Robertson said it provides central government support to programmes that already operate within the community.