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East Timor Atrocities Reported - The atrocities in East Timor are too horrible to contemplate. The Indonesian military is now openly supporting the marauding militia who are killing suspected pro-independence supporters. Decapitated heads stuck on sticks line the road into Dili. Thousands of refugees have been forced onto trucks and taken away. The news director of 2UE, a radio station in Sydney, says East Timorese evacuated to Darwin tell of horrendous atrocities. One woman who arrived in Darwin last night outlined how she saw a person have a child ripped from his arms, shot in front of him, then he witnessed the baby’s neck twisted in front of him. Although Australian troops are on standby Indonesia’s president Habibi has warned they will be viewed as an invading force if they go in East Timor.

Egyptian President Wounded - Egyptian officials are playing down today’s incident in which the Egyptian president was slightly wounded. The president has survived a series of assassination attempts, and today it appears there was another bid to take his life. It occurred when the president’s motorcade drove through a part near the Suez Canal, the president was waving through his car window at the crowds. They Police say a man with a knife plunged toward the president wounding him. The attacker was shot dead on the spot.

ACT Eyes Fight With National - Indications today that ACT intends to do National no favours in the run up to the election. A leaked memo from ACT chief of staff Christopher Milne says that with his party and New Zealand First level pegging in some opinion polls, ACT needs to change its strategy with regards to National, to “see you at the finish line”. Political commentators say this shows ACT intends to fight tooth and claw inspite of any pre-election coalition deals.

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Commerce Commission: Retail Fuel "Not As Competitive As It Could Be"

The Commission has outlined some options it considers could improve competition. There are two broad sets of options it thinks may have the potential to help create a competitive wholesale market. These are:

• Greater contractual freedom to make it easier for resellers to switch between suppliers; and
• Enabling wider participation in the majors’ joint infrastructure, notably the shared terminals and supporting logistics involved in their borrow-and-loan system.
Further options, including improving the transparency of premium petrol prices, are discussed in the draft report. More>>

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Welfare: More Measures To Help Those Facing Homelessness

Ministers have announced $54 million in Government funding for initiatives which will support at-risk individuals and whānau to stay in their existing tenancies. The funding will also provide additional wrap around services. More>>

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Corrections: New Strategy On Māori Reoffending And imprisonment

Authentic co-design with Māori, incorporating a Te Ao Māori worldview, and greater connectedness with whānau are key elements of Hōkai Rangi, Corrections’ new departmental strategy designed to address the long-term challenge of Māori reoffending and imprisonment. More>>

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Pacific Island Forum: Australia v Everyone Else On Climate Action

Traditionally, communiques capture the consensus reached at the meeting. In this case, the division on display between Australia and the Pacific meant the only commitment is to commission yet another report into what action needs to be taken. More>>

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Unscoped Or Missed Damage: Resolution For Canterbury Owners Of On-Sold Homes

People with over-cap on-sold* properties in Canterbury can now apply for a Government payment so they can get on and repair their homes. More>>

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Hamilton-Auckland: First Urban Growth Partnership Signed

New Zealand’s first urban growth partnership between the Government, local councils and mana whenua was signed at a meeting of mayors, chairs and ministers in Hampton Downs today. More>>

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Vote On Action Next Week: Secondary Principals Walk From Negotiations

“Unfortunately we consider there is no further value in continuing negotiations at this point. The government has not been able to table an offer that will be acceptable to our members.” More>>

Patrol Car Stolen, Glocks Taken: Manhunt In Gore

The driver rammed the patrol car before fleeing on foot with Police chasing, also on foot. The man has then circled back around, stolen the patrol vehicle, which had the keys left in it, and rammed another Police car... Two Police-issued Glock pistols were stolen. More>>

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