Nato jets intercept Russian spy plane over Baltic Sea

Posted by Niugini Nius | October 23, 2014 | Posted in

A Russian spy plane has been intercepted by Nato jets over the Baltic Sea, the alliance says, amid heightened tensions in the region.

Estonia summoned Russia's ambassador on Wednesday after its military said the Ilyushin-20 plane had entered its airspace for about a minute.

But Russia said the plane had been on a training flight and had not violated Estonian airspace.

Russia has been accused of several recent border violations in the region.

The conflict in eastern Ukraine, which the West says Russia has stoked by supporting the rebels, has prompted sanctions against senior figures in Moscow and bans on EU goods in response.

In the past week, non-Nato member Sweden has been searching for a submarine reportedly sighted in its waters in the southern Stockholm archipelago some 48km (30 miles) from the capital. The suspected submarine is widely assumed to be Russian.

Last month, Estonia accused Russia of abducting one of its security officials on the border.

Nato said the Ilyushin plane had taken off from the Russian Baltic coast enclave of Kaliningrad on Tuesday and was "first intercepted by Danish F-16 jets when it approached Denmark", before flying north towards Sweden.

Intercepted by Swedish planes, the Ilyushin entered Estonian airspace for less than a minute and was escorted out by Portuguese F16s, the alliance said.

A Russian defence ministry spokesman said the military plane had taken off from Khrabrovo airfield in Kaliningrad and flown "over neutral waters of the Baltic Sea".

The flight was carried out "in strict adherence to the international regulations on the use of airspace", a spokesman told Interfax news agency.

Source: BBC News

Supreme Court Rules Injunction on PM’s Arrest Warrant

Posted by Niugini Nius | | Posted in , ,

A three-man Supreme Court Bench has granted an interim injunction against the arrest of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.

Included in the decision are temporary stay orders against any form of violence, harassment and intimidation of Mr O’Neill, his legal representatives, security unit, their families and staff members.

This latest court decision is expected to see a simmering down of resentment between two main groups of police, who have been at loggerheads over contempt issues surrounding the initial arrest warrant on the prime minister.

The court refused a verbal application to join the hearing, made by lawyers representing Investigation Task Force Sweep Chairman, Sam Koim Fraud and Anti-Corruption Director, Mathew Damaru.

Until the courts decide otherwise, Mr O’Neill cannot be arrested.

One pending court proceeding which still needs to be dealt with are the contempt charges against Police Commissioner Geoffrey Vaki.

There is also the pending decision from the Public Prosecutor on whether or not to refer the prime minister to a leadership tribunal.


Tonga To Host 2019 Pacific Games

Posted by Niugini Nius | | Posted in ,

Two members from the Tonga 2019 Pacific Games visited the country to see preparations for the 2015 Pacific Games.
Chairman Lord Fred Sevele and Secretary General for the Tonga Olympics Committee,Taumoepeau, met with the PNG Olympics Committee to get firsthand information on PNG’s preparations. 
Tonga will host the 2019 Pacific Games.
Visiting PNG to observe current preparations for the 2015 Pacific Games was a two-man delegation from the Tonga Olympics Committee.
Chairman Lord Fred Sevele and Secretary General for the Tonga Olympic Committee,TakitoaTaumoepeaumet with the PNG’s Olympic Committeeto get an understanding of the amount of work involved in the planning of Pacific Games facilities.
While in the country, the two representatives also met with Chief Executive Officer for the Pacific Games Organising Committee, Peter Stuart, to get a general overview of the current status and preparations in the lead up to the Pacific Games.
Both gentlemen were impressed with the amount of work put into the planning and preparationsof the 2015 Pacific Games.
CEO Peter Stewart said he was pleased to pass on what was learnt over the past two and half years to our colleagues in Tonga.  He said every Pacific Games hopes to build on the experiences of the previous Games.
The two gentlemen were accompanied by their Games Organising Committee while visiting different competition venues in and around Port Moresby.
The two Tongan representatives were surprised to see the amount of work in progress upon their visit and said they will return again soon with a bigger group of 2019 Pacific Games organisers and their government representatives to appreciate the efforts and observe the final touches and preparations before the Games begin in July 2015. 

Student among two shot in Mt Hagen looting

Posted by Niugini Nius | October 22, 2014 | Posted in , ,

Two people have been shot by police in attempts to disperse looters who tried to raid seven shops that burned overnight in Mt. Hagen City.
One of those killed is understood to be a high school student who was at the scene this morning when police opened fire. At least one resident said the student was shot during clashes between members of the public and police. 
Police, defence and CS officers were called to the scene last night and have remained at the fire scene for the last 15 hours in efforts to prevent hundreds of looters from taking advantage of the situation.
The fire is understood to have started in a popular restaurant in the heart of the city. As the night drew on, more buildings were consumed by the flames. Buildings belonging to including Chemica, Highlands Pokies and Yoshi’s secondhand shop were destroyed in a space of 4 hours.
The Lae Chamber of Commerce has since issued a warning to travelers to refrain from travelling to other parts along the highway because police attention is currently focused on Mt. Hagen. Police have also asked all business houses in Hagen to remain closed until further notice.
“It’s a siege like situation,” said one resident. “There are up to 10 police cars in the city centre and roads have en blocked off.”

Air Niugini increases domestic flights

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Air Niugini will be increasing frequencies in its domestic sector, effective 26th October 2014 to cater for the upcoming peak period.

The airline’s Chief Executive Officer, Simon Foo said several destinations including Mt Hagen, Kavieng, Hoskins, Lae, Kundiawa, Madang, Wewak, Mendi, Daru and the Port Moresby/Lae/ Hoskins/Rabaul , POM/Lae/Manus and POM/Lae/Buka routes will see an increase in flights.

POM/Mt Hagen flights will increase to 4 times a day, POM/Lae up to 5 daily flights, Kundiawa, POM/Madang and POM/Wewak up to 2 flights in a day. There will be 4 flights to Mendi per week and 3 flights to Kundiawa.

Daru will see an additional flight, bringing to total five flights per week over the peak period whilst a total 4 flights for the POM/Lae/Hoskins/Rabaul sector. POM/Lae/Manus increases to 2 weekly flights and a Wednesday flight operates POM/Lae/Buka. The POM /Gurney routes will be mostly operated by larger Fokker 100 aircraft.

Mr Foo said apart from better aircraft utilization, having additional flights also provides more options and flexibility for customers.

He said “ With additional flights, customers have more options to choose from, resulting in convenience and better travel coordination.”

There will also be changes to aircraft over night and equipment for certain destinations. All aircraft overnight in Kavieng will be on Fokker 100, whilst the direct Buka services will be on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. The flight on Monday and Friday will go via Rabaul. The direct POM/Lihir services will be every Wednesday and Friday, whilst the flights on Tuesday and Thursday will continue to Rabaul.

Meanwhile, the 02nd Cebu service resumes on 27th November.


Posted by Niugini Nius | | Posted in

ROYALTY funds flowing in from the PNG LNG project are being put in a trust account with the Bank of Papua New Guinea (BPNG), an official says.
Petroleum and Energy Department secretary Rendle Rimua said these funds would be released to landowners once the different clan vetting phases were complet. Bank of PNG Governor Loi Bakani yesterday confirmed that the bank had received monthly royalties from ExxonMobil PNG Ltd which was close to K1 million.
He said: “Royalties that are paid by the LNG project has started in May since the first export, its not a big amount. 
“It’s small amounts every month paid to us, it (royalty) started off with less than a million kina, buts its growing based on the volume and shipments,” Bakani said. 
“The more shipments you make in a month, looking at the shipments in the last two months, it’s going over K1 million now.
“The distribution I’m not sure, probably there is a formula on how the funds will be distributed. 
“So that is the kind of revenue that is coming in from the LNG project, every other taxes, dividends all these types of will be effected next year.
Petroleum and Energy Minister Nixon Duban said the recently revived Independent Issues Committee would look into issues of clan vetting and other issues related to the LNG project.

Somare Shares Grief On Whitlam’s Passing

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The man who granted PNG's indepence passes on. ABC File photo
Founding Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea Sir Michael Somare today expressed his sadness of the passing of Australian late Gough Whitlam.

Sir Michael said the late Whitlam was a dynamic leader, who felt that PNG was emerging to be a leader in the pacific.

Sir Michael and Whitlam were the two leaders that stood to witness the fall of the Australian flag and rise of PNG’s red, black and gold colours.

His sudden passing away shocked PNG’s founding father, Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare, who says the late Whitlam was a great Australian who had the heart of our small nation.

Sir Michael said Whitlam’s political engagements and oversight of PNG has enriched greatly towards and after PNG gaining independence.

He described his special attachment with Whitlam not only in politics but family.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill extended his condolences to the family of the late Edward Gough Whitlam stating late Whitlam will always hold a special place in the history of Papua New Guinea as the Australian Prime Minister who worked with our founding fathers to achieve independence.


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