Here is the latest news about the Covid-19 outbreak across the Pacific, from Dan McGarry and Tess Newton Cain on Wednesday 24 June.
The total number of cases of Covid-19 infection listed by the World Health Organization for the region stands at 352, an increase of 38 since last week – a reminder that although infection rates may be slowing in the region, the crisis is far from over.
US inability – or unwillingness – to cope with coronavirus is affecting the Pacific. A spate of new cases have been reported on Guam’s largest air force base.
This raises fears not only in the north Pacific, where travellers from the US have been responsible for every new case for more than a month, but for tourism-dependent countries including French Polynesia, Fiji and Cook Islands.
Concerns are rising throughout the Pacific that governments are not doing enough to safeguard civil liberties or to respect fundamental democratic principles.
Some argue that ‘securitisation’ of the Covid-19 response has provided Pacific leaders with the means to indulge autocratic tendencies. The prolonged states of emergency in several nations have raised constitutional questions.
Please click here to read the full “Coronavirus in the Pacific: weekly briefing” article published at Guardian, written by Griffith Asia Institute, adjunct researcher, Tess Newton Cain and Dan McGarry.