Australia and Oceania

PNG quake toll rises above 100 as PM warns of long recovery

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — The death toll from an earthquake that hit Papua New Guinea last month has topped 100 with thousands injured, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said Friday, warning it will take years for the region to recover. The …

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Strong 6.8 quake hits off Papua New Guinea

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — A powerful 6.8-magnitude earthquake hit off the Papua New Guinea coast early Friday, officials said, but there was no tsunami warning or immediate reports of damage. The quake struck at 3:39am local time (1739 GMT) at …

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Australia central bank chief slams Trump tariffs as ‘bad policy’

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Australia’s central bank chief Wednesday slammed Donald Trump’s decision to levy steel tariffs as “bad policy” and warned of “a very big shock” to the global economy if it sparks retaliation. The US president plans to …

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Strong aftershock as aid starts reaching quake-hit PNG

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Critical relief supplies are finally flowing into areas of Papua New Guinea devastated by a strong earthquake, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said, as another 6.7-magnitude tremor rocked the region Wednesday. At least 67 people were killed …

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PNG quake leaves 67 dead as aftershocks rock homes: Red Cross

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — At least 67 people were killed by a major earthquake that devastated Papua New Guinea’s remote highlands last week, the Red Cross said Monday, with thousands homeless and without food and clean water. The recovery effort …

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Crucial abuse hearing for top Vatican official opens in Australia

by Daniel DE CARTERET Agence France Presse MELBOURNE, Australia (AFP) — A crucial hearing opened in Melbourne Monday to determine if one of Pope Francis’ top advisers, Cardinal George Pell, will stand trial on multiple historical sexual offense charges. The …

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One historical sex charge against Vatican finance chief withdrawn ahead of hearing next week

  MELBOURNE, Australia (AFP) — Prosecutors Friday withdrew one of multiple historical sexual offence charges against Vatican finance chief Cardinal George Pell ahead of his committal hearing next week. The 76-year-old, a top adviser to Pope Francis, has taken leave …

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State of emergency declared in PNG after major quake

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — A state of emergency has been declared in Papua New Guinea’s remote highlands after a major earthquake shook the region in what Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said was an “unprecedented disaster” for local communities. O’Neill said …

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Quake-hit Papua New Guinea struggles to assess damage

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Communication blackouts and blocked roads were hampering rescue efforts Wednesday as Papua New Guinea worked to get a better grasp of the damage wrought by a massive earthquake amid fears of its economic impact. The 7.5-magnitude …

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More than 30 believed dead in PNG quake: report

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — More than 30 people are believed to have died after a powerful earthquake struck Papua New Guinea’s mountainous interior, a report said Tuesday as rescue teams worked to reach the worst-hit areas. The 7.5-magnitude tremor struck …

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PNG troops respond to major 7.5 quake as aftershocks hit

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Papua New Guinea sent troops and rescue workers after a powerful earthquake struck the Pacific nation’s mountainous interior Monday and damaged a gas plant and other buildings. Authorities warned of aftershocks and landslides. There was no …

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PNG troops respond to major 7.5 quake as aftershocks feared

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Papua New Guinea sent troops and rescue workers Monday to respond to a powerful earthquake in the Pacific nation’s mountainous interior, with unconfirmed reports of fatalities and warnings of aftershocks and landslides. Assessment teams were heading …

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