Vanuatu daily news digest | 19 August 2014

Chinese President Xi Jinping reminded the Vanuatu Prime Minister Joe Natuman of the long-standing relationship between the Communist Party of China and the Vanua’aku Pati of this country when the 2 ldeaders met in Nanjing two days ago. The Vanua’aku Pati was the first political party in the South Pacific region to establish party-to-party relations with the Chinese Communist Party which supported Vanuatu Independence in the late ‘Seventies. "China respects the Vanuatu people’s independent choice for development of Vanuatu. China is willing to maintain close contacts with Vanuatu, draw on each other’s advantages, enhance mutual trust and be good partners and friends on the basis of mutual respect, treating each other on an equal footing and sincere cooperation," said the Chinese leader. PM Natuman appreciated the Chinese contribution to maintaining regional peace and stability. He referred to Vanuatu’s on-going support of the One China Policy.

Australian High Commissioner Jeremy Bruer will tomorrow launch the VT 262 million Market for Change (M4C) policy at the Central Market Port Vila, implementing the economic opportunities there are for the skills of women in Vanuatu. He sees the project as one which will strengthen women’s economic security: "Market places link the community to the national and regional economy in many ways," he pointed out to Daily Post. The launch takes place tomorrow at 9 am.

A prototype cheaper and eco-friendly Korean housing model was yesterday launched in Freswota. It will have the strength to withstand cyclones.

Fest Napuan music festival has had a date change. It will now run 1 – 5 Oct

A VT 1.2 million vehicle belonging to the veterinary clinic seems to have been fire-bombed in the area near the Ecole Colardeau the night before last. No reason has been given.

Writer Thomas Carnegie says New Zealand and Australia need to go the "extra mile" to cover the human rights violations that are being carried out by the Indonesian government. Paul Bensemann travelled to the country disguised as a bird watcher last year. He calls West Papua the "hidden conflict" because of the severe lack of coverage given by New Zealand and Australian media. "We know a lot about northern hemisphere conflicts because of the international agencies’ coverage, but we get almost nothing about West Papua," he says. The indigenous population of West Papua has been in conflict with its Indonesian government since 1963. The government continues to commit multiple human rights violations, including murder and torture. Despite such atrocities, the New Zealand and Australian media have given little coverage on the conflict. Critics say this needs to change to bring an end to these violations.