Australia

Vanuatu Mobile Force Officers complete career courses in Australia

Captain David Kaloris attended the All Corps Captain’s Course and Sergeant Romiti Usa Moli completed the Subject One for Sergeant Course.

Captain Kaloris said the course was very challenging but enjoyable, especially, when having to interact with a wide variety of experienced officers from diverse military backgrounds. 

The course included members from various units throughout the Australian Defence Force and regional partners such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, PNG, Vanuatu, Fiji and Tonga.

New South Wales confirms first Covid-related death in 10 months

The authorities said a woman, in her 90s, died in Sydney. She had contracted the virus in a family setting.

New South Wales reported 77 new cases on Sunday. There are now 52 people in hospital, with 15 in intensive care.

Sydney is currently in lockdown, as Australia's largest city fights to contain the highly transmissible Delta strain of the virus.

The reported death is the state's 57th and the first in 10 months.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian warned that the number of new daily infections would rise further on Monday.

Ex-Australia MP alleges inappropriate touching by minister

Ms Banks, who made the allegation in a memoir, said the male MP moved his hand up her leg during a parliamentary vote session before moving away.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison's office said in a statement they weren't previously aware of the allegation.

Behaviour of such kind was "completely inappropriate," they said.

In an excerpt from her memoir, Ms Banks did not identify the man, who she said was still in cabinet.

Vanuatu female cadets excel at Royal Military College in Australia

Dorial Alick and Alvin Vira are Vanuatu’s first female cadets chosen to study at RMC Duntroon after graduating as new recruits in 2019.

They were selected after completing a challenging process conducted by VMF and the Australian Army in Port Vila.

“Whilst they miss their friends and family sometimes, they are very much enjoying the opportunity to learn professional skills in Australia,” the Vanuatu Police Force said.

VPF said the cadets have completed the first third of the course and an advanced English course.

NSW records 24 new cases, half in community before being detected

The premier said it was "a cause for concern" that half of the new cases had been out in the community while infectious.

"If we want the lockdown to succeed, all of us have to minimise our movements," she said.

"In too many examples we are seeing workers who are leaving the house with symptoms or going to work with symptoms.

"Then inadvertently as they are going about shopping or other activity, they are passing it onto others."

Australia funding to help Vanuatu's tourism recovery programme

The assistance will support the Vanuatu Tourism Marketing Recovery Programme over three years beginning in 2021.

A Direct Funding Agreement worth AUD $1,530,000 was signed between Australian Government representative Shannon Ryan and the Acting Director General of the Ministry of Trade Tourism Commerce and Ni Vanuatu Business, Jimmy Rantes in Port Vila recently.

The country’s tourism-reliant economy has been severely impacted by the global COVID-19 pandemic as tourism revenues have been halted due to the closure of borders.

Australia Covid: Outbreaks emerge across country in 'new phase' of pandemic

An outbreak in Sydney linked to the highly contagious Delta variant has grown to 128 cases.

Cases have also been recorded in the Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia.

Officials say it is a "critical time". Australia has kept case numbers low with border closures and lockdowns.

Reports say the emergency meeting considered measures such as mandatory vaccinations for care home workers and new quarantine rules.

This is the first time in months that cases have emerged in multiple parts of the country at the same time.

NSW sees 30 new Covid cases as Sydney locks down

An expanded lockdown now covers 5m people in Greater Sydney, as well as the Blue Mountains, Central Coast and Wollongong.

Cases of the highly infectious Delta variant now stand at 110.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said on Sunday that she expected that figure to rise.

"Given how contagious this strain of the virus is, we do anticipate that in the next few days, case numbers are likely to increase even beyond what we have seen today because we are seeing that people in isolation, unfortunately, would have already transmitted to all their house contacts," she said.

Covid vaccine: Why are Australians cancelling AstraZeneca jabs?

It comes after the government updated guidance last week to recommend only those aged over 60 get the shot, due to the risk of a rare blood-clotting syndrome.

Under-60s have been advised to get the alternative Pfizer shot, of which there are limited supplies.

Turning down any vaccine - and AstraZeneca is the world's most widely used one - may seem remarkable to other nations still battling rampant Covid.

Joint Australian and NZ medical assistance team to help Fiji respond to COVID-19 outbreak

The team will work with their Fijian counterparts from the Ministry of Health & Medical Services to bolster Fiji’s fight against COVID-19.

Australia and New Zealand deployed the highly trained joint multi-disciplinary team following a request from the Fijian Government.

The team’s priority over the next 28 days will be creating additional spaces to offer care to non-COVID patients and to strengthen infection control protocols.

The team are fully vaccinated and, following quarantine, will deploy to Suva to support the Fiji Ministry of Health.