Islander - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Islander

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Camiguin provincial gov't orders selective pork ban

Oct 20, 2019 - 6:02 PM

Governor Jurdin Jesus Romualdo says the province is monitoring all pork products coming into the island as a precaution against the spread of African Swine Fever

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China signs deal to 'lease' Tulagi island in the Solomons

Oct 17, 2019 - 4:16 PM

(UPDATED) The leaked papers reveal the Solomons' Central Province made a 'strategic cooperation agreement' on Tulagi island, which has a natural deep water harbor, with the China Sam Group on September 22

BPI 9-month net income jumps 29.5% to P22 billion

Oct 16, 2019 - 8:05 PM

BPI's net income from January to September is just P1 billion less than the P23.1 billion it earned during the entire 2018

Combatting illegal fishing in Palawan's Calamianes

Oct 15, 2019 - 7:30 PM

Left unaddressed, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing would continue to wreak havoc in the Calamianes, whose coastal and marine ecosystems are among the most diverse and extensive in the Philippines

FIGHT VS ILLEGAL FISHING. The island communities in the Calamianes are dependent on fishing as their main source of livelihood, supplemented with small-scale agriculture and forest-based occupations. Photo by Keith Anthony Fabro/Rappler

BPI services down on October 19 due to system upgrade

Oct 11, 2019 - 12:52 PM

Online banking, ATMs, and other services will be temporarily unavailable


Masbate town vice mayor dies in Manila ambush

Oct 09, 2019 - 5:26 PM

Batuan Vice Mayor Charlie Yuson III is the 9th vice mayor shot dead since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed office

SHOT DEAD. Batuan, Masbate Vice Mayor Charlie Yuson III is killed by unidentified men in Manila on October 9, 2019. File photo from the Facebook of Mayor Charmax Yuson

Indonesia quake death toll rises to 30 – gov't

Sep 29, 2019 - 12:12 PM

Among the confirmed dead are 3 young children, with many people killed by falling debris in and around quake-struck Ambon City

DAMAGED. Several homes are damaged in Ambon, Indonesia's Maluku islands following a 6.5-magnitude earthquake on September 26, 2019. Photo by Handout/Badan Nasional Penanggulangan Bencana/AFP

Boracay rehabilitation body to reassess public emergency services

Sep 29, 2019 - 11:28 AM

The move comes after 7 members of the Boracay Dragon Boat Team perished in an accident while training

Plastic trash threatens dugong survival in Palawan

Sep 28, 2019 - 10:11 PM

Dugong mascot seeks to rally the support of locals in the fight to save the marine mammal

C3 Philippines’ Rey Ramilo introduces the dugong mascot before the community members who partake in the International Coastal Cleanup Day on September 21. Photo by Keith Anthony Fabro/Rappler

DENR suspends all dragon boat races in Boracay

Sep 27, 2019 - 3:34 PM

Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu suspends all dragon boat race activities in Boracay in the wake of a deadly accident that claimed the lives of 7 members of a local dragon boat group

Vietnamese poachers arrested in Palawan

Sep 27, 2019 - 1:06 PM

The Philippine Coast Guard in Palawan says during the chase, the poachers 'were seen throwing their freshly caught fish and sharks off the boat'

PH to build 13 lighthouses on northernmost islands

Sep 25, 2019 - 10:11 PM

The national security adviser says this is a way to demonstrate ownership of these islands, including Fuga, where a Chinese company plans to build a ‘smart city’

NORTHERN LIGHTHOUSES. The Philippine government plans to build lighthouses on its northernmost islands in the Batanes and Babuyan groups. Rappler file photo

7 dead as dragon boat capsizes off Boracay

Sep 25, 2019 - 11:16 AM

(4th UPDATE) The 14 other members of the Boracay Dragon Boat Team were rescued and brought to the hospital, says the Philippine Coast Guard

RESCUE EFFORTS. The Philippine Coast Guard rescues 14 members of the Boracay Dragon Boat Team whose boat capsized in Boracay waters on September 25, 2019. A total of 7 people died in the incident. Photo from PCG

Taiwan terminates relations with Solomon Islands after China switch

Sep 16, 2019 - 11:54 PM

'The government of China has once again resorted to dollar diplomacy and false promises of large amounts of foreign assistance to buy off a small number of politicians,' says Taiwan's foreign minister Joseph Wu

DOLLAR DIPLOMACY? In this file photo taken on May 1, 2018 Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu speaks during a press conference in Taipei. Taiwan on September 16, 2019 severed ties with the Solomon Islands after learning the Pacific nation had decided to switch diplomatic recognition to China, a decision it described as 'extremely regrettable.' File photo by Sam Yeh/AFP

House bill proposes creation of Boracay Island Council

Sep 14, 2019 - 9:30 PM

House Bill No. 4175, authored by Aklan Representative Teodorico Haresco Jr, says the council should be directly under the Office of the President

REHAB CONTINUES. A bill is filed at the House of Representatives for the creation of a Boracay council. Photo by Boy Ryan Zabal/Rappler

Taiwan leader meets Solomons envoy to shore up ties over China

Sep 09, 2019 - 4:37 PM

The Solomon Islands are among only 17 countries that maintain official ties with Taiwan, but Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare has vowed to review the relationship

Taiwan President, Tsai Ing-wen speaks during a press conference at the Taipei Guest House on August 20, 2016.  Tsai, who was inaugurated on May 20 as Taiwan's first female president, will mark her first 100 days in office next week and asked the public not to judge her job performance by just 100 days as her popularity fell to under 50 percent in a recent poll. / AFP PHOTO / SAM YEH

8 dead, 26 missing as dive boat sinks in flames off California

Sep 02, 2019 - 11:40 PM

(UPDATED) Fire crews in helicopters, small boats and a Coast Guard cutter battle the fierce pre-dawn fire on the 75-foot Conception, which had been on a diving excursion around Santa Cruz Island

FIRE. In this photo released by the Ventura County Fire Department on September 2, 2019, firefighters attempt to extinguish a fire on a boat off the coast of Santa Cruz Island, California. AFP PHOTO / Ventura County Fire Department/ HO

Papua New Guinea cancels Australia migrant camp contract

Sep 02, 2019 - 4:30 PM

The Ministry for Immigration and Border security says the remaining 64 migrants on Manus would be transferred to Port Moresby or found homes overseas

MANUS ISLAND. A handout photo taken in late 2016, and obtained from the Refugee Action Coalition on June 14, 2017, shows Australia's regional processing center on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea. Handout photo by Refugee Action Coalition/AFP

4 injured after RO-RO capsizes off Camotes Island in Cebu

Sep 01, 2019 - 12:11 PM

A 10-wheeler truck slips while disembarking, causing the vessel to fall on its starboard side

Photo from the Philippine Coast Guard Facebook page

Carpio corrects China ship owner's apology: Recto Bank not part of Spratlys

Aug 28, 2019 - 6:50 PM

Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio says Recto Bank is within the Philippines' exclusive economic zone, 'beyond the territorial sea of any island in the Spratlys'

GEM-VER. In this photo, the damaged stern of Philippine fishing boat Gem-Ver is seen as it arrives back in its hometown of Barangay San Roque, San Jose, Occidental Mindoro. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

TIMELINE: Killings in Negros

Aug 24, 2019 - 9:51 PM

In just 10 days in the month of July, 21 people are killed in Negros. Police have yet to determine motives for the killings.

STOP THE KILLINGS. A human chain and candlelight protest is staged by rights groups in Quezon City to condemn the violence in Negros province. File photo by Maria Tan/Rappler

Taiwan warns Pacific islands of China's 'empty promises' on aid

Aug 23, 2019 - 10:46 AM

Nations such as Australia and the US fear Beijing's interest is fuelled by a long-term goal to establish a military base in the islands, offering control of vast swathes of ocean

Royalty-free stock photo ID: 786594109  Capital Building at Ngerulmud in Palau  E By Erika Bisbocci

5,000 evacuated as Canary Islands wildfire rages

Aug 19, 2019 - 10:14 AM

The fire is 'extremely fierce' and 'unstable,' according to Canary Islands president Angel Victor Torres

CANARY ISLANDS WILDFIRE. View of the village of Artenara immersed in a smoke caused by the new forest fire that started in the town of Valleseco in the Grand Canary Island of Spain, August 17, 2019. Photo by Desiree Martin/AFP

Fiji PM labels Australia PM 'very insulting' after Pacific standoff

Aug 18, 2019 - 9:31 AM

Leaders of the other 17 nations in the Pacific Island Forum have called on Canberra to do more to cut emissions and curb Australia's lucrative coal industry

'VERY INSULTING.' This handout photo taken on August 14, 2019 and released on August 15 by the Australian Prime Minister's Office shows Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison arriving for the Pacific Islands Forum in Tuvalu. Photo by Adam Taylor/Australian Prime Minister's Office/AFP

De Lima to Duterte: Scrap deals with Chinese firms in key PH islands

Aug 17, 2019 - 3:57 PM

Senator Leila de Lima cites 'claims from no less than our top military officials that Chinese presence in these strategic border islands would pose, if not guarantee, security risks to our country'

CHIQUITA ISLAND. File photo from Wikipedia

Ardern backs Pacific on climate, puts heat on Australia

Aug 14, 2019 - 4:31 PM

Australia's role in the Pacific Islands Forum is in doubt after leaders of the low-lying nations question whether its leader is committed to curbing a problem seen as a threat to their survival

ARDERN BACKS THE PACIFIC. New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern looks on as she is welcomed by European Council President at the European Council in Brussels on January 25, 2019. Photo by Emmanuel Dunand/AFP

DENR, Aklan gov't to help in Boracay garbage hauling payment

Aug 13, 2019 - 11:30 AM

The Malay government is facing difficulty in paying ECOS P95 million for its collection, hauling, and dumping services from January to June 2019

10 rescued after boat capsizes off Cebu

Aug 07, 2019 - 6:01 PM

No one is seriously injured in the incident that happened off Mactan Island

RESCUED. Waves cause a boat carrying 10 people to capsize off of Mactan Island. Photo Courtesy of Lapu-Lapu City Quick Rescue Team

Christian churches fear more PNP, AFP in Negros may mean more deaths

Aug 07, 2019 - 4:57 PM

The National Council of Churches in the Philippines says that rights of the citizens to speak and organize should be respected, amid rampant red-tagging of human rights organizations

NCCP. Image from the About Us page of the National Council of Churches in the Philippines at https://nccphilippines.org/about-us/

Philippine military warns on Chinese investment in key islands

Aug 06, 2019 - 9:54 PM

Military spokesman Brigadier General Edgard Arevalo says the government should study the security implications of handing over the islands to foreign entities

CHIQUITA ISLAND. Military spokesman Brigadier-General Edgard Arevalo says the government should study the security implications of handing over the 3 islands to foreign entities. File photo from Wikipedia

Duterte to 'fill up' Negros Island with military troops

Aug 06, 2019 - 6:26 PM

'I will never declare martial law, except in Mindanao because it is really needed there, because of rebellion,' says President Rodrigo Duterte, as he ruled out a martial law declaration in Negros Island

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte presides over the 40th Cabinet Meeting at the Malacañan Palace on August 5, 2019. ACE MORANDANTE/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Duterte rules out martial law in Negros, for now

Aug 06, 2019 - 1:30 PM

'Martial law will only be enforced in accordance with the Constitution,' says Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo

Church and rights groups join the families of the victims of the killings in Negros Island in an indignation rally conducted to condemn the recent spate of killings in the region on July 27 in Quezon City. Photo by Mark Saludes/Rappler

Peace and order in Negros 'remains normal' – Albayalde

Aug 06, 2019 - 11:53 AM

Top cop General Oscar Albayalde says the police are 'doing everything' to keep President Rodrigo Duterte from using emergency powers to address the spate of killings in Negros Island

BULLET HOLES. The car of lawyer Anthony Trinidad is riddled with bullet holes after they were attacked in Guihulngan City on July 23. Photo courtesy of the Negros Oriental Police Office

Iran seizes 3rd foreign ship in less than a month

Aug 04, 2019 - 6:52 PM

The identity of the latest vessel seized and the nationality of its detained crew has not yet been revealed

Image via Shutterstock

Robredo questions martial law as solution to Negros killings

Aug 04, 2019 - 6:30 PM

Vice President Leni Robredo urges authorities to find the suspects behind the killings in Negros Oriental instead

ROBREDO. Vice President Leni Robredo speaks at a forum in March 2017. File photo from the Office of the Vice President

Negros island killings have 'very low' chance of spilling over to Zamboanga del Norte – army

Aug 04, 2019 - 1:14 PM

While army intelligence 'said the chances are very low,' according to Lt. Colonel Rufino de Leon, it is still possible for the NPA to create diversionary attacks'

RUFINO DE LEON. Lt Colonel Rufino de Leon, commander of the 97th Infantry Battalion covering Zamboanga del Norte and incoming commander of 5th Cadre Batallion based in Piñan, Zamboanga del Norte.

Pacific leaders want summit focus on climate, not China

Aug 04, 2019 - 9:53 AM

The Pacific islands are now a hotbed of aid projects and charm offensives as anxiety over China's presence grows

PNP sees no need for martial law in Negros: 'It's under control'

Aug 02, 2019 - 4:23 PM

The Philippine National Police says all its units in Negros Island 'remain on full alert and vigilant to thwart and prevent occurrence of crimes and killings'

'UNDER CONTROL.' PNP Chief Police General Oscar Albayalde at a press conference at Camp Crame on Monday, July 29, 2019. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Amid Negros killings, Duterte warns of doing ‘something drastic’

Aug 01, 2019 - 8:49 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte says he will have guns issued to fire fighters so they can help in maintaining peace and order

NEGROS VIOLENCE. In this file photo, President Rodrigo Duterte delivers his speech during the 'Araw ng Pasasalamat' for the overseas Filipino workers at Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo in Quezon City on July 12, 2019. Malacañang photo

Duterte 'can declare martial law' in Negros to stop violence, says Panelo

Aug 01, 2019 - 3:25 PM

Malacañang says President Rodrigo Duterte would 'certainly' make the declaration if recommended by security officials, but Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana says there is no need for it at this time

NEGROS KILLINGS. Church and rights groups join the families of the victims of the killings in Negros Island in an indignation rally on July 27, 2019, in Quezon City. Photo by Mark Saludes/Rappler

DND insists China 'squatting' in West PH Sea

Aug 01, 2019 - 2:44 PM

'Possession' or 'position?' The Defense department clears up post-SONA mess by reiterating the Philippines’ claim of sovereign rights in the West Philippine Sea

MABINI REEF. Internationally known as Johnson Reef, Mabini Reef has been reclaimed and turned into a military outpost by China. Image from CSIS/AMTI

BPI net income soars by 24.6% to P13.7 billion in H1 2019

Aug 01, 2019 - 1:41 PM

The Bank of the Philippine Islands boasts impressive earnings as corporate, consumer, and credit card loans jump by double digits in the 1st half of 2019


Slain Dinagat board member's daughter gains support to take father's seat

Jul 26, 2019 - 9:39 PM

(UPDATED) The Dinagat Islands Provincial Employees Association urges the provincial government 'to honor the memory of board member Olofernes by allowing his daughter, Chelsy, to take his seat in the Sangguniang Panlalawigan'

SHOT DEAD. Dinagat Islands Sangguniang Panlalawigan Board Member Wenefredo Olofernes is shot dead by unidentified gunmen in Surigao City on July 7, 2019. Photo couresy of Dinagat Islands PIO Facebook Page

Megaworld subsidiary to open 2nd hotel in Boracay

Jul 18, 2019 - 5:35 PM

Housing 442 rooms, the Belmont Hotel Boracay will be opening its doors to tourists in August 2019

Photo from Megaworld Corporation

Palawan is 2019's 2nd-best island in the world

Jul 15, 2019 - 8:26 AM

...but of course that doesn't come as a surprise

PALAWAN. Limestone rocks and bright blue waters make up the trademark view from Kayangan Lake, a top tourist site in Coron, Palawan. Photo by Amanda Lago/Rappler

Dutch tourist killed in Malaysia cave floods, guide missing

Jul 13, 2019 - 5:48 PM

Eight other tourists in the same group are safe after fleeing to higher ground

ACCIDENT. Flash floods kill a Dutch tourist in a popular cave located in the rugged Mulu National Park on Malaysia's Borneo island, an official said on July 13, 2019, as a search continues for a missing guide. Photo courtesy of Sarawak Fire and Rescue Department / AFP

DOJ orders probe into killing of Dinagat board member

Jul 09, 2019 - 2:50 PM

The National Bureau of Investigation will look into the killing of Wenefredo Olofernes, who was shot dead in Surigao City

SHOT DEAD. Dinagat Islands Sangguniang Panlalawigan Board Member Wenefredo Olofernes is shot dead by unidentified gunmen in Surigao City on July 7, 2019. Photo couresy of Dinagat Islands PIO Facebook Page

Dinagat provincial employees condemn killing of board member

Jul 09, 2019 - 7:00 AM

The provincial board will tackle on Tuesday, July 9, the resolution filed by 4 members calling justice for the murder of Wenefredo Olofernes

BLACK. Dinagat Islands provincial employees wear black on Monday, July 8 – a day after the murder of board member Wenefredo Olofernes. All photos from Dinagat Islands Information Office

Dinagat board member shot dead after Sunday jogging

Jul 07, 2019 - 11:40 AM

'We lost a good leader in Dinagat Islands today,' says Dinagat Islands Governor Kaka Bag-ao

SHOT DEAD. Dinagat Islands Sangguniang Panlalawigan Board Member Wenefredo Olofernes is shot dead by unidentified gunmen in Surigao City on July 7, 2019. Photo couresy of Dinagat Islands PIO Facebook Page

Italian island Stromboli clears up ash after deadly volcano eruption

Jul 05, 2019 - 9:25 AM

A veil of ash lay atop restaurant terrace tables, boats and parts of the coastline of the tiny island. The dramatic volcanic eruption killer a hiker.

This handout photo obtained from the twitter account of @mariocalabresi shows the eruption of the Stromboli volcano on July 3, 2019 on the Stromboli island, north of Sicily. A volcano on the Italian island of Stromboli erupted dramatically on July 3, reportedly killing a hiker and sending tourists fleeing, but firefighters could not immediately confirm any casualties.  Mario CALABRESI / Twitter account of @mariocalabresi / AFP