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Coups, fish and the media: in conversation with Sean Dorney

By Tess Newton Cain and Sean Dorney

Recently in Brisbane, Tess Newton Cain caught up with Sean Dorney, veteran PNG and Pacific affairs reporter for the ABC. You can listen to a podcast of their conversation here and or read the transcript here. For the highlights of what they discussed, read on… (spoiler alert – they didn’t talk much about PNG).

I began by asking Sean which of the stories he covered in the Pacific (outside of PNG) were the ones that had the most impact on him. It’s not an easy question to answer; there have been so many. And, as Sean noted, the region is hard to pin down:

“Look, one of the things about the Pacific is all the countries are so very, very different. The Polynesian countries are different from the Melanesian countries. They’re both different to the Micronesian countries. And I’ve been fortunate enough to have been to almost every one of them. And what I find fascinating is that no matter where you go, every country has its own… individual issues and problems. So, that’s what I’d start with, is that there’s a huge variety of interesting things going on in all these different countries.”

Understandably, the coups in Fiji are stand out moments in Sean’s memory. Not least because some of his reporting led to his being deported from that country. But he did identify one issue that he has covered over many years, which he sees as being one that resonates in almost all of the countries of the region – regional and sub-regional management of tuna fisheries:

“I was at the very, very first meeting, where the Forum Fisheries — the PNA, Parties to the Nauru Agreement, they met in Nauru of course. And it was… almost a ground-breaking getting-together of these different Pacific countries who …read more

From:: Development Policy Centre – DEVPOLICY Blog

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