Melissa Clarke,

Melissa Clarke

Canberra, ACT, Australia

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Recent articles by Melissa:

India, interrupted: Why was Scott Morrison going to New Delhi and will his absence matter?

If this summer hadn't presented a bushfire crisis of unprecedented scale, Prime Minister Scott Morrison would have spent this week in India — but it's a voyage he will need to make sooner rather than later. → Read More

NSW fires cause problems for Snowy Hydro 2.0 with machinery lost and town half-destroyed

The beleaguered Snowy Hydro 2.0 scheme is facing another setback, after bushfires hit the renewable energy project on multiple fronts. → Read More

Anatomy of an epidemic: How measles took hold of Samoa

Sixty-two children in Samoa have died from measles. After a mass-vaccination campaign, authorities are hopeful the spread of the highly-contagious virus has been contained, but remain on edge. How did it come to this? → Read More

This man sacrificed his 18-year Cathay pilot career to continue his fight for Hong Kong democracy

A former Cathay Pacific Airways pilot warns that Australian businesses like Qantas are vulnerable to political pressure from the Chinese Government, after the Hong Kong carrier was told to suspend personnel engaged in pro-democracy protests. → Read More

Australia's $440m loan to PNG 'completely unrelated' to countering China, Finance Minister says

Australia's decision to give Papua New Guinea a $440 million loan is completely unrelated to the Federal Government's desire to curb China's influence in the Pacific, according to Finance Minister Mathias Cormann. → Read More

Australia: Aid budget to be reviewed

Australia's aid budget is set for an overhaul, with the government wanting to "refresh" the objectives behind the nation's foreign aid spending. → Read More

Australia's $4 billion a year aid budget to be reviewed, but no change to total funding

The total amount of foreign aid, worth $4 billion this financial year, won't be up for discussion despite persistent criticism that Australia spends less as a proportion of national income than comparable countries. → Read More

'A world of transition': Footy diplomacy as Australia, Fiji gear up to deploy troops to Middle East

Troops will be jointly deployed on a UN peacekeeping mission in the Middle East within weeks, marking the growing closeness of the two countries' military ties. → Read More

Australia to ease kava import limits as part of Pacific diplomacy push

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announces during a visit to Suva Australia will ease import restrictions on kava as part of efforts to improve relations with Fiji and other Pacific countries. → Read More

Climate change could stretch our capabilities, Defence Force chief speech warns

Increasingly frequent natural disasters caused by climate change could stretch the capability of the Australian Defence Force, according to a speech prepared for the Defence Force Chief. → Read More

Despite being PM for more than a year, Scott Morrison has never been invited to China — why?

While Scott Morrison has scored a state dinner invite from Donald Trump, closer to home his team has failed to secure the same hospitality from the Chinese. → Read More

Australia: Fiji PM warns Australia needs to be 'more than good mates'

Fiji's Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama has warned Australia must do more if it wants a stronger relationship with the Pacific, as the two countries signed a partnership agreement covering economic, security, and community ties. And he's specifically requested Australia's help in UN climate negotiations. → Read More

Fiji's PM Frank Bainimarama warns Australia needs to be 'more than good mates' to the Pacific

In the wake of Pacific nations criticising Australia over its stance on climate change, Frank Bainimarama downplays Scott Morrison's suggestions Fiji and Australia are like family, saying it's about more than being good mates to one another. → Read More

Pacific Islands Forum: How Enele Sopoaga and Scott Morrison lost when Australia scuttled Tuvalu's hopes

At the annual Pacific Islands Forum, Tuvaluan Prime Minister Enele Sopoaga hoped the leaders present would work together. And they did, until talks turned to climate change, writes Melissa Clarke. → Read More

Pacific leaders agree to disagree about action on climate change, as Tuvalu Declaration fails

We tried our best, says Tuvalu's Prime Minister after the hopes of smaller Pacific nations to get fully endorsed on their declaration for climate change are dashed. → Read More

Climate compromise expected as Pacific leaders seek Scott Morrison's support

Tuvalu's PM is paving the way for a compromise on climate change, to ensure Australia agrees to a consensus position by the region's leading Pacific Islands Forum. → Read More

Australia's climate change struggle with the Pacific pushes New Zealand under the press

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern backs calls by the leaders of Tuvalu and Fiji that every country must commit to greater cuts in carbon emissions, as the members of the Pacific Islands Forum negotiate a consensus on a statement on climate change. → Read More

Tuvalu's PM says Australia's climate funding for Pacific 'not an excuse' to avoid emissions cuts

Tuvalu warns Australia that redirecting aid money to climate resilience projects in the Pacific should not be used as an excuse to avoid reducing emissions. → Read More

Climate change to be the focus as Scott Morrison attends Pacific Islands Forum

Pacific countries know they're the focus of renewed attention from Australia, the US and China and are looking to leverage that attention from global powers into real support for climate change action. → Read More

Carryover credits: Australia rejects climate concerns from Pacific island neighbours

The Australian government flatly rejects calls from Pacific countries to stop using carryover credits to meet emissions reductions targets. → Read More