Marshall Islands foreign minister Tony de Brum (centre) at the Pacific Islands Forum in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.  Photograph: Ness Kerton/AFP/Getty Images

Pacific leaders have hit out at the insensitivity of an Australian minister’s apparent joke at the expense of low-lying nations struggling against ris(...)

Australia’s Conservative prime minister Tony Abbott won an election last September after campaigning on tough immigration policies, which have been criticised internationally but which polls show remain popular with voters. Photograph: Justin Lane/EPA.

Australia will reintroduce a controversial temporary visa system to deal with a huge backlog of asylum seekers, its immigration minister said today, (...)

A handout image released by the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship  shows an asylum seeker arriving on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea. Photograph: EPA/Department of Immigration and Citizenship.

An asylum seeker was killed and scores were injured when a violent protest ended with a breakout from an immigration detention camp run by Aust(...)

Perfect midlands day

If it was a Saturday in the midlands, I’d head first to the market in the old railway warehouse at Sheridan’s cheesemongers outside Kells to pick u(...)