Australia

Tonga being discussed as part of major tour in Oct by Prince Harry and Meghan

A high-profile trip to Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga in October is being discussed at the highest level and aides are promising that the second half of this year will be ‘incredibly busy’ with official visits.

The couple have already announced that they are delaying their honeymoon to return to work the week after their nuptials.

It is anticipated that Miss Markle – now the Duchess of Sussex – will join the Queen at the Chelsea Flower Show for the first time and make an appearance at one of her annual garden parties in the coming weeks.

Seven people found dead in house at Australian holiday town

Police sources have confirmed the deaths are a murder suicide.

Two adults were found outside the house and the other five bodies were discovered inside at about 5.15am this morning.

Detectives from the Major Crime Squad have travelled to the town, about 270 kilometres south of Perth, as part of the investigation.

Two firearms were located at the scene.

Commissioner Dawson announced the discovery at a media conference in Perth, describing the deaths as a tragedy.

Australian Test captain Tim Paine says he is here to stay, vows to reduce sledging

The 33-year-old believes he can not only lead the Australian team through its most tumultuous period in recent memory, but carry the torch for years to come.

"I'm going to be doing everything I can to be doing it for as long as I can," he said.

"At the moment, I'm captain for as long as I'm around. Steve's got a two-year ban from the leadership role, but he's somebody who I'll be speaking to quite closely.

"I feel as good as I've ever felt. I was saying to somebody this morning I'm 33 going on 22. My body feels great."

Australian opposition leader accuses govt of Pacific fail

The Australian newspaper quoted Mr Shorten saying the Turnbull government's approach towards Australia's friends in the Pacific had been found wanting.

He said it was neglecting the South Pacific as Chinese influence in the region grows.

China has reacted angrily to claims it is burdening small island states with infrastructure debt, buying influence in the South -Pacific with "gifts" for projects and proposing ports that could be used by the Chinese navy.

Aust minister says the people oppose aid increases

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that 80 percent of Australians do not support any further spending on foreign aid.

Ms Fierravanti-Wells revealed the results of the government's polling as she called for Britain to partner on infrastructure development in the Pacific.

Speaking to aid agencies on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London, she said the Australian aid budget will be kept at US$3 billion dollars and would not increase until the economy was back on a sustainable footing.

Commonwealth Games: Brandon Starc emerges from brother's shadow with high jump gold

While Mitchell was dismantling Test batting lineups around the world, and his namesake was warging into wolves and giants beyond the Wall, Brandon Starc was plugging away in track and field, claiming an eighth place here (Glasgow 2014), or a 15th place there (Rio 2016 Olympics) in international high jump.

But now, after an immaculate showing in front of a riveted home crowd, Starc claimed gold with a personal best jump of 2.32 metres — his first medal, let alone a gold, in a senior athletics meet.

'Fake' Indian journalists held in Australia over human trafficking

The group told officials at Brisbane airport that they had arrived to cover the Commonwealth Games.

If convicted of human trafficking, the journalist, who had a valid media pass, faces up to 20 years in jail.

The Commonwealth Games will be held in Australia's Gold Coast between 4 and 15 April.

The group had travelled through Bangkok, where officials suspected them of carrying fraudulent documents and alerted authorities in Australia.

Colombia 0 Australia 0

Half-time substitute Borja was denied from the spot by birthday boy Danny Vukovic and hit the post twice – the second coming in the last minute of stoppage time – as Colombia failed to show the clinical edge that saw them come from two goals down to beat Les Blues 3-2 in their previous outing.

Jose Pekerman's team were by far the better side at Fulham's Craven Cottage and produced plenty of the fast attacking breaks and skilful forward play they hope will bring them success at the World Cup, but ultimately failed to convert a number of excellent chances.

Nearly 150 beached whales die in Australia

About 150 of the animals were found beached at Hamelin Bay, about 300km (180 miles) south of Perth.

Their discovery by a local fisherman on Friday prompted a major rescue effort to return them to deeper waters.

However, by nightfall, more than 140 of the whales had died, with deteriorating weather conditions and the threat of frenzied sharks impeding efforts.

More than 100 volunteers, wildlife personnel and others came to the aid of the beached short-finned pilot whales, a species known to strand en masse.

Australia pledges additional $10.5 million humanitarian assistance to Tonga

The additional package of assistance will help restore community infrastructure such as schools and water supplies, and support farmers whose crops were devastated.

Tropical Cyclone Gita hit Tonga on 12 February, damaging almost 4,000 houses and leaving 60,000 people without power.

The first Australian Defence Force flight arrived within 24 hours of the cyclone hitting Tonga.