Australia and Oceania

Australia fires ‘long way from over’ but rain brings relief

by with Glenda Kwek in Sydney / Holly ROBERTSON MOGO, Australia (AFP) — Massive bushfires in southeastern Australia still has a “long way to go”, authorities have warned, even as colder conditions brought some relief to exhausted firefighters and communities …

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Australian animals face extinction threat as bushfire toll mounts

by Glenda KWEK GLENMORE PARK, Australia (AFP) — When volunteer Sarah Price found a baby kangaroo frightened but miraculously alive in the pouch of its dying mother surrounded by the embers of Australia’s bushfires, it seemed fitting to name him …

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Fire-hit Australian farmers vow to rise from the ashes

by Glenda KWEK BATLOW, Australia Steve Bellchambers is digging pits to bury the carcasses of livestock killed by bushfires which swept through his farm in Batlow, New South Wales. He is one of several dozen residents who remained in the …

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Australia bushfires flare as heatwave brings renewed misery

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Bushfires flared in southern Australia on Thursday as a heatwave expected to bring renewed misery set in, and officials warned some areas are “just at the beginning” of the devastating crisis. Soldiers went door-to-door advising residents …

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Military evacuates fire-hit Australian town

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — The Australian military has begun the seaborne evacuation of hundreds of people trapped in a fire-ringed southeastern town, as the country braced for more catastrophic conditions. A navy landing craft from the HMAS Choules docked in …

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Australia scrambles to reach thousands stranded by bushfires

by Holly ROBERTSON SYDNEY, Australia (AP) — Relief supplies began reaching thousands of people stranded in fire-ravaged Australian towns Wednesday after deadly bushfires ripped through popular tourist spots and rural areas leaving at least eight people dead. Navy ships and …

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‘Terrible time’ as New Zealand volcano toll climbs

  By Marty Melville WHAKATANE, New Zealand (AFP) — The official death toll from New Zealand’s White Island volcano disaster rose to eight Thursday, as fears of another eruption continued to frustrate efforts to recover bodies from the smouldering island. …

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‘Unfathomable grief’ as eight still missing at New Zealand volcano

  By Marty Melville WHAKATANE, New Zealand (AFP) — New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern expressed “unfathomable grief” Tuesday for tourists caught in a deadly eruption at the White Island volcano, where five people have died and eight more are …

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One critically injured as popular New Zealand volcano erupts

by Neil SANDS WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AFP) — At least one person was left in a critical condition when New Zealand’s White Island volcano erupted suddenly on Monday, leaving authorities scrambling to treat the injured and find those unaccounted for. …

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Smoke haze settles over Australian capital as bushfires burn

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Smoke haze from bushfires raging in Australia spread to the capital Sunday, as firefighters raced to contain more than 140 blazes ahead of a heatwave forecast early this week. Australia is experiencing a horrific start to …

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Freak waves flood homes in Marshall Islands

MAJURO, Marshall Islands (AFP) — More than 200 people have been forced to flee their homes after they were inundated by freak waves in the Marshall Islands capital Majuro. Swells averaging five meters (16 feet) washed rocks and debris onto …

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Bushfire threat spreads in Australia as smoke chokes Sydney

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — The fire danger was elevated across wider swathes of southern Australia on Thursday, with residents warned to avoid at-risk areas as smoke from bushfires choked Sydney and other major cities. Devastating fires along the country’s east …

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