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Your Monday News of Zealand: Earthquakes on the East Coast and Indian Students Sent Home for Faking Documents

Plus, a woman went on a Balinese holiday and got arrested, while more Kiwis want to see an end to the monarchy.

by VICE Staff
05 September 2016, 12:00am

Earthquake shaking reported to GeoNet within 30 minutes of Friday's quake. Image via.

East Coast Remains on Earthquake Alert Following Big Shake

Aftershocks continue after the 7.1 earthquake that shook North Islanders awake early Friday morning, triggering a tsunami alert. The quake was centred 100 kilometres off the East Cape and hundreds of tremors have struck the region since. GNS Science rates the likeliness of a strong aftershock measuring between 6.0 and 6.9 in the next few days at 60 percent. Another large quake could trigger another tsunami threat.

Civil Defence is reviewing its response to Friday's quake after it was criticised for not releasing a national advisory until 40 minutes after the quake struck. The Red Cross has also received complaints for not providing enough info about the quake and tsunami warning on its disaster app Hazard. Bill Martin, owner of Te Araroa Holiday Park, told RNZ East Coasters that no one could completely relax with the possibility of another big quake now hanging over them. "I don't think it's time to put all the bottles back on the shelf just yet," he said.

Helen Clark is still in the running to be the next UN Secretary-General. Image via.

If UN Staff Had Their Way, Helen Clark Would Be the Boss

United Nations staff have named Helen Clark the top choice for the organisation's next Secretary-General. When staff were asked to name their top three candidates, Clark received the most mentions (439), ahead of frontrunner former Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Guterres (381) and Costa Rican diplomat Christiana Figueres (340). The results were published in The Huffington Post. For weeks now Helen Clark's has looked a little wobbly, as she consistently ranks in the middle of the pack in secret straw polling of Security Council member nations. But Clark is showing no signs of withdrawing from the race. She said the staff survey was pleasing in a post on LinkedIn. "I said at the outset that this campaign would be a marathon, not a sprint, and so it has proved to be," she wrote.

Myra Williams was at "very talkative and impatient" at Indonesian Customs. Image via Facebook

A New Zealand Tourist Was Arrested High on Meth in Bali

A Taupo woman's holiday began badly when she was arrested carrying methamphetamine into Bali. Myra Williams was high on the drug when she got off her flight from Melbourne at Denpasar Airport. The 27-year-old, who now lives in Australia, confessed to taking ecstasy, meth, and marijuana at a party the night before her departure. She was "very talkative and impatient to wait in line for her passport to be stamped," said the National Narcotics Agency in a statement.

Indonesia has strict drug trafficking laws. As Williams was found in possession of less than a gram of methamphetamine, she is not likely to face the firing squad. The penalty for possession is four to 12 years in jail and a fine of up to a million dollars.

Race Relations Commissioner Susan Devoy. Image via.

A NEW RACE RELATIONS CAMPAIGN WANTS YOUR STORIES OF RACISM

New Zealand has always had a problem with racial intolerance and it is time to do something about it, says Race Relations Commissioner Susan Devoy. In an open letter announcing the new campaign That's Us, Devoy called for Kiwis to share their own stories about racism, intolerance, and hatred. "We are confident New Zealanders are ready to take part in meaningful conversations that will talk about the realities of racism and what each of us can do about it," said Devoy.

Each year around 400 people make formal complaints about racism to the Human Rights Commission.

Queen Elizabeth, image via.

There's Growing Support for the Republic of New Zealand

The Queen could be the last English monarch to have their face stamped on a New Zealand coin. A new poll shows growing support for republicanism, with 59 percent of people surveyed wanting to ditch the monarchy in favour of having a New Zealander as Head of State. That's a big increase on two years ago when only 44 percent wanted to get rid of the Queen. The poll was commissioned by New Zealand Republic. Peter Hamilton, chair of New Zealand Republic, told Stuff he thought Brexit, the flag debate and the fact that the Queen was now 90 years old, all contributed to New Zealanders thinking seriously about this country's place in the world. Young people were the biggest supporters of a change, with 76 percent of those aged 18 to 30-year-olds wanting an end to the monarchy in New Zealand.

Indian students protest with Unite Union, image via.

Indian Students Say They Are Being Unfairly Deported. Minister Says "Tough."

Forty-one students have been deported back to India and dozens more could follow after it was found their applications to study in New Zealand are based on fake documents. Students say they are being unfairly punished and that dodgy agents in India are to blame. A group of protesters gathered in Mt Roskill Auckland over the weekend holding signs saying "We are the victims, not offenders." But Minister for Tertiary Education, Stephen Joyce, showed little sympathy telling The Nation the responsibility lay with the students to make sure their papers are legit. Immigration New Zealand currently turns down about 40 percent of student visa applications from India.

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