Kiribati

NZ Orion finds two fishing boats missing off Tarawa

The two boats, which had been reported as missing separately, were found in quick succession.

There were four survivors but one person had died.

The search and rescue operation was coordinated by the Rescue Coordination Centre Fiji after initial search efforts by Kiribati authorities failed.

The Orion was initially searching for a five-metre wooden fishing vessel, which had gone missing between Tarawa and Maiana Islands and had last been seen on 30 October.

The crew were later asked to also look for a smaller aluminium boat, 72 nautical miles west of Tarawa.

Kiribati blocks Chinese travelers over coronavirus fears

Kiribati is the latest Pacific country to impose entry requirements to stop the spread off the virus.

All visitors are now required to fill out a health form and travelers from countries with the coronavirus must go through a self-quarantine period.

Meanwhile, health authorities in Wallis and Futuna have ordered 5000 face masks amid concern over the propagation of the coronavirus.

This is the territory's biggest order of its kind as people worry the respiratory illness could reach the archipelago.

Kiribati police find cocaine and marijuana packages

A report from KPS said that as illicit drugs are already in the country, people particularly youths, are probably using it.

KPS said the pure cocaine package, weighed 1.5kg while the other package containing marijuana weighed more than 3kg.

The drugs are being kept at the Kiribati Police Headquarters in Betio.

Police have called on the public to report information related to suspected drug use and possession.

Litany of failures led to Kiribati ferry tragedy - inquiry report

Those conclusions are detailed in a report by the Commission of Inquiry into the sinking of the MV Butiraoi, which details a litany of failures that led to the country's worst maritime disaster.

The report was released by the office of the president, Taneti Maamau, on Monday. Until then, it had only been available in hard copy at the president's office or the national library, a move which had been criticised as secretive and undemocratic, with reports of time restrictions and a ban on copying, photographing or taking notes from the report.

Opposition organises anti-China protest march in Kiribati

The opposition in Kiribati has organised an anti-China protest march this morning in Tarawa.

Police closely monitored the procession through the streets, which saw protestors waving Taiwanese flags and chanting "We love Taiwan, we hate China, we want peace".

The leader of the opposition Titabu Tabane said the people were not consulted by the government and vowed to switch back to Taiwan if his party were voted into power in next year's election.

Good weather mitigates king tide damage in Kiribati

Kiribati Climate Action Network's Pelenise Alofa said she's thankful there was no wind or storm surge to drive it over seawalls and into properties.

People on Tarawa and other islands have been working all week to build up seawalls in preparation for the inundation, Ms Alofa said.

However, not everyone can afford new cement to protect their properties, she said.

The KiriCAN national co-ordinator said she had been up all night preparing for the tide but will soon go out to check on others around Tarawa.

Anger in Kiribati over unreleased report on ferry disaster

The inter-island vessel sank in January this year on a trip from Nonouti to Tarawa, claiming at least 80 lives.

The government this week told parliament a commission of inquiry report will not be made public as they had just announced a police investigation into some of those allegedly involved in the sinking.

Nonouti MP, Sir Ieremia Tabai, who is a former president of Kiribati, said the police inquiry is no excuse for not making the report public.

Kiribati MPs yet to see report on ferry tragedy

The president was responding to a question by Sir Ieremia Tabai, the MP of Nonouti, from where the vessel had departed.

More than 80 people died when the ferry sank at the end of January this year.

Sir Ieremia said MPs had previously been told the report should be ready before the current sitting of parliament.

President Taneti said the delay was due to the sudden illness of the commission's chairman, and he now expected the report before the next parliament meeting in December.

Anote Tong says cutting emissions won't save Kiribati

Mr Tong is visiting New Zealand to promote a film called Anote's Ark which portrays the frightening climate change reality that his people face.

He said even if the most ambitious targets for reducing global carbon emissions are met Kiribati and other islands like Tuvalu and Tokelau could still be swamped by the sea.

Kiribati reports highest number of HIV cases in study

The People Living with HIV Stigma Index Study has recorded a total of 28 people from Kiribati with HIV.

The other Pacific nations in the study are the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Vanuatu, Tonga, Samoa and Palau.

Regional co-ordinator of the study, Jokapeci Tuberi Cati, said out of the 28 cases in Kiribati, only five people were interviewed and monitored taking their anti-retroviral treatment.