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Greens Get Formal - Nasty Defence Surprise - Reserve Bank - Cyclones - Christmas Island Miracle - Home Invasion Rape - Navy Rape - Hokianga Murders

GREENS GET FORMAL: The Greens have formalised their relationship with the Labour Alliance coalition government: Jane Young Live: Q: Is this the beginning of a more conventional relationship? A: The Greens say they do not want to be part of formal coalition. Around here there is talk that the greens could be the preferred partner for Labour in the future.

NASTY DEFENCE SURPRISE: New Finance Minister says the previous government under-budgeted its defence commitments. He says he got a nasty surprise when treasury showed him the books and says the previous government was dishonest in not including the full costs of planned capital expenditure in fiscal forecasts. Former Treasurer Bill English says all the info was in the PREFU. Cullen agrees the $1 billion expenditure is in the budget but that it is not enough for the high priority spending the government had planned.

RESERVE BANK: Treasurer Michael Cullen and Don Brash have signed a new policy targets agreement.

CYCLONES: Australia's outback communities are recovering after Cyclone John - but another Cyclone is on its way. Karratha had a lucky escape says civil defence. Whim Creek pub lost its top story. Cyclone Ilsa is expected to follow Cyclone John's path tomorrow.

CHRISTMAS ISLAND MIRACLE: Yachtie shipwrecked near Christmas Island very lucky to survive. After climbing a 30m sheer cliff he drank condensation ate flies and goats eyes to survive. Locals say it was a miracle anyone was on the Island to find him as they usually close up after October.

HOME INVASION RAPE: Rapists face higher sentences for home invasion rape. The benchmark has been raised from eight to 11 years. Matt Robson says he is concerned about the retrospective nature of the penalty applied in the Beverly Bouma case. Tony Ryall said he would like the rights of the victims to be respected. Justice Minister Phil Goff says the bill was passed hastily.

NAVY RAPE: Naval rape. Lieutenant Commander sentenced to two years - suspended - jail for the rape of a female naval rating in Dubai in a "three-in-a-bed" incident.

HOKIANGA MURDERS: Memorial Service held to put Rawene's darkest days behind them. Family of Trevor Makoraka say they are taking it badly. Houses where the murder took place have had the Tapu lifted.

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