Volcano erupts on remote Papua New Guinea island

Papua New Guinea’s Manam volcano has a history of eruptions, with major activity in November 2004 forcing the evacuation of some 9,000 people. (AFP)
Updated 08 January 2019
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Volcano erupts on remote Papua New Guinea island

  • Manam island is a volcanic cone that towers out of the sea, north of the Papua New Guinea mainland
  • Papua New Guinea has many volcanoes, particularly on its offshore islands

SYDNEY: One of Papua New Guinea’s most active volcanoes has begun to erupt, authorities said Tuesday, pummeling villages on a remote island with volcanic rock.
Manam island is a volcanic cone that towers out of the sea north of the Papua New Guinea mainland and has a history of eruptions, with major activity in November 2004 forcing the evacuation of some 9,000 people.
The volcano has erupted a number of times since then and spewed lava and ash last month.
A series of tremors around Manam triggered a warning system on Monday and the volcano began erupting shortly after, the Rabaul Volcanological Observatory said.
The eruption continued into early Tuesday, Ima Itikarai of the observatory said.
An observatory report shared with local news website Loop PNG said the latest eruption came from the main crater, with lava channeled into a nearby valley and “intermittent bursts” of volcanic rock falling on villages.
Papua New Guinea has many volcanoes, particularly on its offshore islands, as the country lies at the junction of two tectonic plates.
Some islanders who were evacuated from Manam 15 years ago and resettled elsewhere on Papua New Guinea recently complained they were still struggling with their new lives, The National newspaper reported.


One third of UN workers say sexually harassed in past two years

Updated 36 min 29 sec ago
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One third of UN workers say sexually harassed in past two years

  • The online survey was completed by 30,364 people from the United Nations and its agencies
  • More than half of those experienced sexual harassment said it happened in an office environment

UNITED NATIONS: One third of UN staff and contractors experienced sexual harassment in the past two years, according to a report released by the United Nations on Tuesday.
The online survey, carried out by Deloitte in November, was completed by 30,364 people from the United Nations and its agencies — just 17 percent of those eligible. In a letter to staff, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres described the response rate as “moderately low.”
“This tells me two things: first — that we still have a long way to go before we are able to fully and openly discuss sexual harassment; and second — that there may also be an ongoing sense of mistrust, perceptions of inaction and lack of accountability,” he wrote.
The survey comes amid the wider “Me Too” movement around the world against sexual harassment and assault.
According to the report, 21.7 percent of respondents said they were subjected to sexual stories or offensive jokes, 14.2 percent received offensive remarks about their appearance, body or sexual activities and 13 percent were targeted by unwelcome attempts to draw them into a discussion on sexual matters.
Some 10.9 percent said they were subjected to gestures or use of body language of a sexual nature, which embarrassed or offended them, and 10.1 percent were touched in way that made them feel uncomfortable.
More than half of those experienced sexual harassment said it happened in an office environment, while 17.1 percent said it happened at a work-related social event. Two out of three harassers were male, according to the survey.
Only one in three people said they took action after experiencing sexual harassment.
Guterres said the report contained “some sobering statistics and evidence of what needs to change to make a harassment-free workplace real for all of us.”
“As an organization founded on equality, dignity and human rights, we must lead by example and set the standard,” he said.
The United Nations has tried to increase transparency and strengthen how it deals with such accusations over the past few years after a string of sexual exploitation and abuse accusations against UN peacekeepers in Africa.
The head of the UN agency for HIV and AIDS is also stepping down in June, six months before his term ends, after an independent panel said that his “defective leadership” tolerated “a culture of harassment, including sexual harassment, bullying, and abuse of power.”