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Palau second cable breaks ground today

The second submarine Cable Landing station breaks ground today at Ngardmau State according to information from Belau Submarine Cable Corporation (BSCC) CEO Robin Russell.  The second cable connects a spur to the Echo Cable…

Minister Payne arrives in Palau

Australia’s Foreign Minister Marisa Payne said her visit to Palau is to advance” an open, resilient and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.” Payne will be here from Dec. 2 to 4 and in her speech, she said she…

Quarantine in Taiwan with “travel bubble”

Palauans flying to Taiwan will go through quarantine like every other traveler. This is despite the travel bubble arrangement between these two countries dubbed by Palau as the “Sterile Corridor”. Palauans who fly into…

Kumangai Bakery donates to PCS

On November 16th, 2021, Palau Conservation Society (PCS) received a generous donation of $200 from Kumangai Bakery.  Kumangai Bakery began from humble beginnings. Shortly after World War II, a Palauan couple by the names…

Social Factors and Health

On November 18, 2021, I watched the Palau “MOF 2021 Economic Symposium – Forging New Pathways” live via YouTube. I…

Who, and Where, Is Peng Shuai?

By: Raymond Zhong @ 2021 The New York Times A simple question has gripped the sports world and drawn the attention of the White House, United Nations…

Post-Tokyo 2020 subsidy payment for NOCs up less than two per cent from Rio 2016 level

TOKYO, 22 NOVEMBER 2021 (INSIDE THE GAMES)—-A post-Tokyo 2020 subsidy paid by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to National Olympic Committees (NOCs) has ended up little-changed from the equivalent subsidy paid after Rio 2016. It has been announced that the post-Tokyo “Participation in the Olympic Games” subsidy, part of a programme run by Olympic Solidarity,…

Cambodian Airline chartered to bring in workers from Macau. (Photo credit : Ongerung Kambes Kesolei)

Cambodian aircraft departs leaving 21 illegal workers behind

The chartered Cambodian aircraft that brought 21 illegal Chinese workers from Macau to Palau on Tuesday, left yesterday without the illegal workers, according to information from Director of Border, Customs & Immigration John Tarkong Jr.  The aircraft was permitted to depart as it was only chartered by an agent to bring the passengers, added Mr.…

ARE YOU THIRSTY?

Water, water, water everywhere, nor any a drop to drink!  ~Samuel Taylor Coleridge (English Poet) The adaptations…

PPUC Welcomes New Hires

PPUC is excited to announce the recent hiring of four individuals, 3 females and 1 male, to the PPUC family. All four…

Delibch-e-Beab

Harsh reality is better than false hope. Do you ever feel like you’ll never  change? Are you stuck in the grip of a negative emotion? Do…

Donut House donates to PCS

On November 1st, 2021, Palau Conservation Society (PCS) received a generous donation of $250 from Best Coffee and Donut House.…

Poignant Memories

A good friend of mine sent me a picture while visiting the gravesites of the Faithful Departed on All Souls’…

New Zealand aims to work more alongside Pacific nations

WELLINGTON, 08 NOVEMBER 2021 (RNZ PACIFIC) — The New Zealand Foreign Minister says the country’s new Pacific policy is about a partnered approach. Nanaia Mahuta’s focus on resilience is the follow up to the Pacific Reset set…

U.S seizes 9.9kg of meth bound for Fiji

SUVA, 08 NOVEMBER 2021 (FIJI TIMES) — Close to 10 kilograms of methamphetamine bound for Fiji was seized in the United States, says the U.S Attorney’s Office. The drugs…

Micronesian Games pushed back a year

MAJURO, 08 NOVEMBER 2021 (MARSHALL ISLANDS JOURNAL) — The every-four-year Micronesian Games have been postponed due to ongoing uncertainty about Covid and restricted travel in the region. The large…

Tahiti named host of 2027 Pacific Games

PAPEETE, 08 NOVEMBER 2021 (INSIDETHEGAMES) — Tahiti will host the Pacific Games for the third time having been awarded the 2027 event at the Pacific Games Council (PGC) General…

Paramount Chief Ibedul Yutaka Gibbons pass away in Taiwan

Paramount Chief Ibedul Yutaka Gibbons of Koror State passed away yesterday, at 1:55 pm Palau time while in hospital in Taiwan announced Bilung Gloria Salii, his sister and chief matriarch of Koror.  Sirens blared ten (10) times last evening announcing his passing according to cultural tradition.  The ten siren blares represent his 10 final breaths,…

No child starts school day hungry as MOE starts breakfast program

The Ministry of Education started a school breakfast program this month in public schools aimed at ensuring that no child starts the school day hungry.  Education Minister Dale Jenkins told Island Times that the program makes breakfast fully accessible to all public…

House bill dismantles EQPB, says obstructs economic development

House bill 11-27-2S, HD1 that passed its 3rd and final reading last Thursday, seeks to remove the Environmental Quality Protection Board (EQPB) and move its functions to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Environment under the Executive Branch. The bill passed…

South Pacific Cyclone Season starts today

The first day of November is also the first day of the South Pacific cyclone season. Last season taught humanitarian and emergency personnel that they need to be prepared to respond as early as possible. When severe tropical cyclone Yasa hit Fiji last December as a Category 5, it was the earliest in the season…

System hacked: Pundari

PORT MORESBY, 29 OCTOBER 2021 (THE NATIONAL) — Papua New Guinea’s Finance Department is restoring the Government system after a purported hacker left its Integrated Financial Management System…

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COVID-19’s global death toll tops 5 million in under 2 years

The global death toll from COVID-19 topped 5 million on Monday, less than two years into a crisis that has not only devastated poor countries but also humbled wealthy ones with first-rate health care systems. Together, the United States, the European Union, Britain and Brazil — all upper-middle- or high-income countries — account for one-eighth of the…

Learning to Live With Mark Zuckerberg

By: Ben Smith @ 2021 The New York Times (The Media Equation) After Mark Zuckerberg announced, in a goofy video Thursday, that he was changing his company’s name to Meta and shifting its focus to the creation of a digital space called the Metaverse, he granted interviews to just four media outlets, including exactly zero…

MOE finalizing plans to shift to year-round schooling

The Ministry of Education is finalizing plans to shift to  year-round school  next 2022-2023 school year,  In an interview, Minister Dale Jenkins said in the year-round schooling, students start school in  August, and will have several two- to three-week mini-breaks throughout the year. …

Encouraging women’s participation in public life

Global Cooperation & Training Framework(GCTF), a cooperation between the Republic of China-Taiwan, the United States of America and Japan with co-hosts from Canada, hosted an online conference on women empowerment, “Road to Parity: Women’s participation in public life”. The…

SSA puts 60 million in Climate Transition investments

Palau Social Security Administration changed its investment policy, moving 60 million of its equity to the Climate Transition investments which is defined as “long-term capital growth by investing in companies globally that either provide solutions to climate change or orientate their business models to a low-carbon economy”. “We updated our investment policy to reflect the…

Former diplomats call on Australia to commit to climate action

Seventy former diplomats including the former Australian ambassador to Palau have signed an open letter to the Prime Minister and senior cabinet ministers of Australia that its lack of commitment to stronger climate action by 2030 is concerning to its regional partners. The letter, which was made  ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in…

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PNMS celebrates its 6th anniversary

Palau National Marine Sanctuary (PNMS) celebrates its 6th anniversary since it was first designated as a national sanctuary 6 years ago. The celebration event featuring “Leadership Cook-off” and other interactive activities will take place…

Annual Olchotel Belau Fair improved over 20 years

The 2021 Olechotel Belau Fair showed the significant improvements OBFs have had over the past 20 years since 2001.  Held on Sunday at Kokusai, Ngatpang, the annual event aimed to showcase Palauan culture through…

Presidential DA issued with restrictions

President Surangel Whipps Jr. and his delegation departed to Glasgow, the UK on Monday, with a week stopover in the United States, and as per protocol issued a designation of authority in his absence.…

Facebook dithered in curbing divisive user content in India

NEW DELHI, India (AP) — Facebook in India has been selective in curbing hate speech, misinformation and inflammatory posts, particularly anti-Muslim content, according to leaked documents obtained by The Associated Press, even as its own employees cast doubt over the company’s motivations and interests. From research as recent as March of this year to company…

WIOA reports remaining funds and 2nd chance

There are $2.368 million remaining to be disbursed to the WIOA recipients that have been filing reports and receiving PUA and FPUC assistance up to September 4, 2021, reported the new Executive Director of WIOA Ta’o Ngirmeriil. Of the 1,200 recipients of pandemic assistance, 140 have received their final payments while 1,060 continue to receive…

Members of the Peleliu legislature forfeit pay for non-attendance

Seven (7) members of the 13th Peleliu Legislature have lost their $500 monthly honorariums since March due to “lack of attendance” at Legislature sessions or doing other work of the legislature. In a letter dated October 12 to Peleliu legislators Charles Rekemel, Joel Okada, Edberg Mabel, Umedip Ridep, Cordino Soalablai, Florah Tewid, and Billy Rekemel,…

PPLA law may violate Constitution says legal opinion

The law that created PPLA is “likely invalid because it seems to violate the Palauan Constitution due to an over robust insulation of the PPLA members from the President’s control,” states Senate Legal Counsel in an opinion requested by the Senate. Senate earlier this October approved two presidential appointments to the PPLA Board to replace…

𝐌𝐞𝐥𝐞𝐦𝐨𝐥𝐞𝐦 𝐞𝐥 𝐊𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐞𝐬𝐞𝐮: 𝐁𝐚𝐧𝐤 𝐨𝐟 𝐆𝐮𝐚𝐦 ; 𝐏𝐚𝐥𝐚𝐮 𝐂𝐨𝐧𝐬𝐞𝐫𝐯𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐒𝐨𝐜𝐢𝐞𝐭𝐲

𝘊𝘰𝘯𝘵𝘪𝘯𝘶𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘵𝘰 𝘚𝘶𝘱𝘱𝘰𝘳𝘵: 𝘉𝘢𝘯𝘬 𝘰𝘧 𝘎𝘶𝘢𝘮 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘗𝘢𝘭𝘢𝘶 𝘊𝘰𝘯𝘴𝘦𝘳𝘷𝘢𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘚𝘰𝘤𝘪𝘦𝘵𝘺 Koror, Palau – On…

Slow vax rates could see Solomons’ borders closed until 2023

HONIARA (RNZ PACIFIC) —-Poor uptake of the Covid-19 vaccine in Solomon Islands could see the country’s borders remaining closed until 2023. Poor uptake of the Covid-19 vaccine in Solomon Islands could see the country’s borders remaining closed until 2023. This was the warning from prime minister Manasseh Sogavare this week as he reiterated the government’s…

Positive cases cleared, 2 more no-show for Day 5 testing

Ministry of Health reports that the 3 identified positive COVID-19 and the 33 close contacts have been cleared after their Day 10 test results came in negative yesterday.  They have been cleared of all quarantine, isolation, and testing requirements. MHHS also reported that 42 out of the 44 inbound travelers who came on the October…

Right communication critical to disaster preparedness

How to get the right and timely information to as many people as possible in plain and easy language to understand is key to communicating in the face of disaster, an important lesson conveyed to roomful of reporters this past week as members of the media learn how to better communicate in the face of…

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Top Stories

Report cites room for improvement in Palau to reject tobacco industry interference in public health measures

Koror, Palau – October 18, 2021 – A civil society report finds there is room for improvement to prevent tobacco industry interference in health.  The report is a result of Palau’s first participation in an international survey reviewing tobacco industry interference in measures protecting public health.  It will be officially released on Wednesday, 20 October,…

Protestors disrupt flame lighting for Beijing Winter Games

ANCIENT OLYMPIA. Greece (AP) — Three activists protesting human rights abuses in China broke into the archaeological site where the flame lighting ceremony for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics was being held Monday and ran toward the Temple of Hera holding a banner that read “No genocide games.” The protesters climbed over a fence to…

Late-night magic: Braves beat Dodgers 5-4, lead NLCS 2-0

ATLANTA (AP) — More late-night magic has the Atlanta Braves just two wins away from the World Series. Eddie Rosario delivered Atlanta’s second straight walk-off hit in the ninth inning, giving the Braves a 5-4 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday and a commanding 2-0 lead in the NL Championship Series. Rosario’s fourth…

Uchimura, 5 new Olympic champs headline gymnastics worlds

TOKYO (AP) — Kohei Uchimura will be aiming for a measure of redemption when the world championships begin in his hometown this week in what could be a competition finale for one of the greatest male gymnasts of all time. Stung by the disappointment of not qualifying for the horizontal bar final at the Tokyo…

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World

Finance Ministers hold key to COP26 success: UN Secretary-General

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (UN NEWS CENTRE) —The COP26 climate change conference must be “a turning point” if countries are to limit global temperature rise in line with the Paris Agreement, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said on Tuesday.  Addressing members of the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action, he highlighted their critical role as the conference…

Multiculturalism & Intercultural Communication

I read an article in Island Times dated February 12, 2019 titled “Former President, lawmaker support Bilung’s imposition of fines versus individuals in explicit videos” I reflect back to the simpler days and the teachings of my mother. I am an interracial child adopted out at age two months and raised in a single parent…

Oldies but goodies: The Lakers may be ones to catch in West

It may be a roster like none other. The Los Angeles Lakers have four of the NBA’s top seven active scorers. The top three leading active rebounders. Three of the top four active leaders in assists. Three of the top five in blocks. Three of the top five in wins. Four of the top six…

Playoff series for the ages as Dodgers, Giants go to Game 5

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Everybody expected a playoff series for the ages between the century-old rival Dodgers and Giants, and now they’ve got it. Anything less than a winner-take-all Game 5 would have been a baseball travesty, leaving the sport short-changed on the October stage. It’s the 107-win, NL West champion Giants vs. the defending…

Extreme rain conditions wreak havoc island-wide

Extreme rain conditions over the past weekend wreaked havoc across the island causing eight (8) landslides on both west and east coasts of Babeldaob and road failures in three (3) different sites, one (1) in Airai and two (2) in Ngermid.  Reports also of more soil displacement are still coming in according to Director Brian…

Merck asks US FDA to authorize promising anti-COVID pill

WASHINGTON (AP) — Drugmaker Merck asked U.S. regulators Monday to authorize its pill against COVID-19 in what would add an entirely new and easy-to-use weapon to the world’s arsenal against the pandemic. If cleared by the Food and Drug Administration — a decision that could come in a matter of weeks — it would be…

3 more COVID-19 positive cases identified

Three (3) more travel-related COVID-19 positive cases have been identified after sixty-four (64) inbound travelers from October 3, 2021, United Airlines flight from Guam received their Day 5 testing. According to the Ministry of Health and Human Services (MHHS) report, the tests conducted with PCR GeneXpert and Abbot ID confirmed the results to be positive…

Palau’s unemployment benefits during the pandemic marred with allegations of fraud as accused still waits for formal charges – Part 2

Island Times team (2-part investigative article on the US pandemic assistance to Palau under the WIOA program) But while the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) has kept most Palauans afloat during the pandemic, the office and the people who used to run it has been facing accusations of fraud which according to the ongoing investigation could…

Tourism recovery depends on “our acceptance”

Work to revive Palau’s tourism industry is mainly dependent on the Palauan people’s acceptance and internal assurance that comes from knowing that they are protected as claimed by Minister Ngirai Tmetuchel of Human Resources, Culture, Tourism, & Development (MRCTD). “Marketing is easy.  The major issue is with us, it’s an internal issue.  We need everyone,…

US grant for contact tracing system will also “clean” telecommunications network

The grant received by Palau to develop a contact tracing system will also “clean” the country’s mobile network.  “We want a clean network and most importantly a network we can trust,” President Surangel Whipps Jr. said in his press conference last week.  President Whipps again reiterated that the island nation will be removing Huawei technology…



Billboard

Task Force Koa Moana 21 Removes Ordnance from Peleliu

KOROR, Republic of Palau. – (Oct. 9, 2021) With its calming waters slowly climbing and descending the warm sands of the island, Peleliu in the Republic of Palau, could be considered the ideal tropical paradise. Its white sands, blue waters and dense vegetation cover the remnants of a war long past, but not forgotten with…

PAWS Mobile Spay/Neuter Sterilization Clinic a Success

The Palau Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) partnered with San Diego Spay/Neuter veterinarian, Dr. Terry Paik, and sterilization clinic specialist, Marie Chenery, to take the new PAWS mobile spay/neuter clinic to some of the Babeldaob states in Palau, in addition to working at the PAWS Topside clinic in Koror.  This successful partnership was held between Sept…

JICA Volunteer Program resumed in Palau

On October 10, 3 JICA Volunteers arrived in Palau after a year and half suspension of the Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCV) Program due to the worldwide pandemic. 3 JOCVs, Mr. Ippei Mukobara, Mr. Yohei Sonoo and Mr. Akira Owada, will work for promotion of tourism at Palau Visitors Authority (PVA), math and PE education…

Nominate a UOG graduate for the 2021 Distinguished Alumni Awards until Oct. 15

The University of Guam Office of Development and Alumni Affairs, in partnership with the UOG Alumni Association, is accepting nominations for the 2021 UOG Distinguished Alumni Awards until the new extended deadline of 4 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 15. Any individual who graduated from UOG earlier than 2008 is eligible to be nominated. Nominations may…

CIP Facilitates Sandimen Township Delegation Trip to Palau for Sister City MOUs Signing

The signing of MOUs on sister city relations took place on September 30th in the Republic of Palau, one of Taiwan’s diplomatic allies, between Sandimen Township of Pingtung County, the Angaur State and Ngchesar State of Palau. Secretary-General Akiku.Haisum of the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP), Taiwan Ambassador Wallace Chow to the Republic of Palau…

Bank of Guam® Streamlines Saipan Operations to Garapan Branch

Expanding focus on digital banking solutions October 01, 2021, Hågatna, GU.: After almost 10 years of serving Saipan’s southern region, Bank of Guam announced today that they will be officially closing their Chalan Piao location on December 31, 2021, streamlining operations under its Garapan branch. Since the beginning of 2021, the Bank has embarked on…

Japan and Palau signed $2.3M Grant Aid Contract for MRI Machine and Incinerator

On September 28th, 2021, His Excellency KARASAWA Akira, Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of Palau, and His Excellency Surangel Whipps Jr., President of the Republic of Palau exchanged notes on the Japan’s Grant Aid “The Economic and Social Development Programme” for Palau. Honorable Gustav Aitaro, Minister of State and Directors of Ministry of Health…

Bank of Guam® Wins 2 Top Honors in National Brand Competition

Stop COVID, Spread LOVE best in crisis communications and social media campaign September 28, 2021, Hågatna, GU.: Bank of Guam announced today that their campaign Stop COVID, Spread LOVE has been awarded two (2) 2021 Brand Slam Awards for best crisis communications and social media campaign from the American Bankers Association (ABA). The 2021 ABA…

“Training Palau’s Police Force – Lauching of the 27th
Basic Police Academy”

September 24, 2021 – This coming Monday, September 27, 2027, marks the beginning of the 27th Basic Police Academy under the direction of the Ministry of Justice, which features a fifteen (15) week course covering all basic and core law enforcement principles and practices to ensure the new recruits going through the training come away…

Opinion

Journalists who ‘speak truth to power’ recognised with Nobel Peace Prize

NEW YORK (UN NEWS CENTRE) —Two campaigning journalists were awarded the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, which UN Secretary-General António Guterres said was recognition that a free press is “essential for peace, justice, sustainable development and human rights – and the cornerstone for building fair and impartial institutions”.  From the Philippines, Maria Ressa, Chief…

Decade of climate breakdown saw 14 percent of coral reefs vanish

NEW YOR (UN NEWS CENTRE) —Between 2009 and 2018, the continuous rise in sea temperature cost the world 14 percent of its coral reefs – that’s more than the size of Australia’s reefs combined – a UN-backed report revealed on Tuesday. In the Sixth Status of Corals of the World: 2020 Report, experts from the…

Seven climate action highlights to remember before COP26

NEW YORK  (UN NEWS CENTRE) —A September to remember, a pivotal month for climate action commitments. From the United Nations General Assembly week to the final pre-COP meeting, last month was an important time to build momentum before the decisive UN Climate Conference COP26 in early November.  UN News has put together a list of…

China’s declining Pacific aid presence

SYDNEY (THE INTERPRETER) —In November 2018 Port Moresby was a sea of red in the build up to the APEC leader’s summit. Chinese flags covered every road of Papua New Guinea’s capital while “China aid” was emblazoned – literally – on every traffic light. With China’s President tacking an official two-day state visit on to…

UN SG’s António Guterres remarks at virtual meeting with Pacific Islands Forum Leaders

NEW YORK, 24 SEPTEMBER 2021 (UN)—Thank you for the opportunity to once again address the Pacific Islands Forum. Your nations are confronting a dual crisis of climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic. Both threaten Pacific lives and livelihoods. If we follow the current path, the consequences of climate disruption for the prosperity, the well-being and…

The Silent Majority

by Alonzo ‘Al’ Kahalic alkahalic6801@gmail.com Dear Editor, I am writing to your good paper to introduce myself and the many topics I would like to share with your readers. My name is Alonzo Kahalic, Al for short and in my over 50 years of roaming and rambling around our great island of Palau I have…

Belonging

Those who have a great sense of love and belonging have the courage to be imperfect.  ~Brene Brown Most of my growing years I never felt belonging to a place, a home, or a people.  Merle Haggard’s song, “I’m the running kind…” seemed to have been written for me.   I had to force myself to…

Undersea internet cables connect Pacific islands to the world. But geopolitical tension is tugging at the wires

By Amanda H A Watson, Research Fellow, Department of Pacific Affairs, Australian National University  CANBERRA (THE CONVERSATION) —If you’ve ever emailed a resort in Fiji or Vanuatu about that long-awaited holiday, it’s likely your email travelled through an undersea internet cable. Such cables carry much of the internet traffic around the globe, in conjunction with…

Pacific Media Unity Against Corruption

PINA Media chief executive officers (CEOs) and owners met in a virtual one and half day conference hosted by the Media Association of Solomon Islands (MASI) on 15-16 September at the Tavanipupu Island Resort. The September 2021 summit is the second convening of Pacific Media CEOs and Owners after the inaugural conference in Auckland, New…

Youth’s impassioned plea to Pacific leaders

HONIARA/APIA  (SPREP)—Gladys Habu of Solomon Islands Friday delivered a plea for hope to Pacific leaders who had gathered for the Environment Ministers’ High-Level talanoa, which was held on the curtails of the 30th SPREP Meeting of Officials this week.  Habu is a former Miss Solomon Islands, and is a passionate climate change activist, who in…

COVID-19 Delta variant still ‘most concerning’, say WHO experts

GENEVA (UN NEWS CENTRE) —Even with the emergence of the new Mu COVID-19 variant, the Delta strain remains the top concern globally, appearing to “outcompete” others, senior officials with the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Tuesday. “I think the Delta variant for me is the one that’s most concerning because of the increased transmissibility,”…

OCO 21st Annual Meeting – Transnational crimes require regional collaboration

SUVA 1 (OCO SECRETARIAT) —Despite border closures and reduced air and sea travel because of COVID-19, Customs administrations in the region say threats in the Pacific remain high from illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing fleets – as well as threats from illegal movements of people, drugs and weapons, which are often facilitated by trusted insiders.  …


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February 02, 2021