New Zealand

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University Discovers Student Dead in Dorm for 8 Weeks

New Zealand's education minister has called for an investigation

(Newser) - A male college student who was found dead in his New Zealand dorm room Monday night is thought to have been dead for nearly 8 weeks before being discovered. The Guardian reports students at the Sonoda dorm at the University of Canterbury outside Christchurch contacted police after detecting an odor.... More »

Sensing the End, Employee Brings Support Clown to Meeting

Balloon animals and miming enliven New Zealand ad agency firing

(Newser) - When Joshua Jack was invited to a meeting by his bosses to "discuss your role" at a New Zealand ad agency, he figured what was up. So he invited not a friend or family member to come along for support; he hired a professional clown for $200. The clown... More »

Among the 9/11 Tributes Was This One

New Zealand firefighters salute first responders with traditional haka dance

(Newser) - All kinds of tributes took place Wednesday to mark the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, but one in Auckland generated a fair share of attention. New Zealand firefighters performed a haka, a traditional Maori war dance, to salute the first responders of 9/11, reports CNN . US ambassador Scott Brown... More »

Tourist Killed in 3am Attack in New Zealand

Attacker shot at van, stole it with injured man inside

(Newser) - A manhunt was underway in New Zealand on Friday after an Australian tourist was killed following what police believe was a random attack on the van that he and his partner were sleeping inside. Police said the couple was parked at a scenic spot near the coastal town of Raglan... More »

There Was Once a Penguin the Size of an Adult Human

The 'monster penguin' was about a foot taller than an emperor penguin, lived in New Zealand

(Newser) - Scientists in New Zealand said Wednesday they've found fossilized bones from an extinct monster penguin that was about the size of an adult human and swam the oceans some 60 million years ago. They said the previously undiscovered species is believed to have stood about 5 feet 2 inches... More »

Letter From Alleged Mosque Gunman Appears on 4Chan

'This cannot happen again,' prison minister says

(Newser) - New Zealand officials admitted Wednesday that they made a mistake by allowing the man accused of killing 51 people at two Christchurch mosques to send a hand-written letter from his prison cell. The six-page letter from Brenton Tarrant was posted this week on the website 4chan, which has become notorious... More »

Giant Parrot 'Squawkzilla' Is a First-of-Its-Kind Find

Extinct bird was more than half the height of an average human

(Newser) - Researchers believe they've found the largest known parrot to ever inhabit our planet, and it just happens to be about twice the size of the parrot it now dethrones. While the critically endangered kakapo of New Zealand can weigh close to 8 pounds, Heracles inexpectatus weighed an estimated 15.... More »

Man Who Shared Mosque Shooting Video Gets 21 Months

Judge accused him glorifying massacre

(Newser) - A Christchurch businessman who shared a video of worshippers being slaughtered at a New Zealand mosque was sentenced on Tuesday to 21 months in prison. Philip Arps had earlier pleaded guilty to two counts of distributing the video, which was livestreamed on Facebook by a gunman on March 15 as... More »

NZ Mosque Suspect Smirks, Doesn't Speak, During Hearing

Brenton Tarrant's lawyer enters not guilty pleas

(Newser) - The man accused of the New Zealand mosque attacks smirked as his lawyer entered not guilty pleas to terrorism, murder, and attempted murder charges Friday before a judge who set his trial for next May. The courtroom was filled with 80 survivors and family members of the 51 who were... More »

Girl Tries to Bribe Ardern for Dragon Info

New Zealand PM says she'll 'keep an eye out'

(Newser) - An 11-year-old girl tried to bribe New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to reveal everything she knows about dragons and telekinesis. Too bad Ardern can't be bought. "Unfortunately we are not currently doing any work in either of these areas! I am therefore returning your bribe money, and... More »

After Intern Asks Question, Big News From Ardern

New Zealand PM got engaged over Easter, rep confirms

(Newser) - She gave birth as prime minister. Now, Jacinda Ardern may wed as prime minister, too. The New Zealand leader got engaged to her partner of more than five years over Easter weekend, a spokesman confirmed Friday. As the New York Times quips, "New Zealand almost didn't notice."... More »

7 Weeks After Christchurch Massacre, a New Death Toll

51st victim dies after surgery

(Newser) - A Turkish man wounded in the Christchurch mosque shootings seven weeks ago died late Thursday in Christchurch Hospital, raising the death toll to 51, authorities in New Zealand and Turkey confirmed. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said Friday the sad news would be felt across both countries, the AP... More »

Prison System Spent $670K on Slushie Makers for Guards

New Zealand's DOC defends the move

(Newser) - New Zealand has about 9,000 people behind bars and another 9,000 staff members manning the prisons, and the country's department of corrections was fearful yet another hot summer could fuel an increase in violence between the two groups. Its solution? A whole lot of slushie machines. The... More »

Red Cross Angered a Country by Revealing Her Name

New Zealand says it never gave permission to release name of nurse held by ISIS

(Newser) - New Zealand's government did not approve the International Committee of the Red Cross' decision to release the name of a New Zealand nurse held captive by ISIS in Syria, the country's foreign minister said Tuesday. Foreign Minister Winston Peters said an ICRC official's claim to have acted... More »

New Zealand's Strict New Gun Laws Take Effect

They passed by a 119-1 vote

(Newser) - New Zealand's governor general on Thursday formally signed into effect sweeping gun laws outlawing military-style weapons, less than a month after a man used such guns to kill 50 people and wound dozens at two mosques in Christchurch. Governor General Patsy Reddy signed the bill as police said a... More »

Jacinda Ardern: My Actions Were 'Intuitive'

New Zealand prime minister reflects on her handling of mosque shootings

(Newser) - New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern has been praised for her handling of the aftermath of the mosque massacres in her nation. The Dalai Lama, for instance, called her "wonderful" because "she really tried to tackle this problem through nonviolence, through compassion and through mutual respect," per... More »

NZ Shooting Suspect 'Has No Emotion' During Hearing

Man charged in mosque shootings ordered to undergo mental health check

(Newser) - A New Zealand judge has ordered that the man accused of killing 50 people at two Christchurch mosques undergo two mental health assessments to determine if he's fit to stand trial. High Court judge Cameron Mander made the order during a Friday hearing in which 28-year-old Australian Brenton Harrison... More »

Tight Restrictions Surround Mosque Shooting Suspect

Brenton Tarrant will make 2nd court appearance Friday

(Newser) - Police say the man accused of the Christchurch mosque attacks will face 50 murder charges and 39 attempted murder charges at his second court appearance on Friday. Australian citizen Brenton Harrison Tarrant was charged with one representative count of murder after his arrest the day of the March 15 massacre,... More »

New Zealand Falls Silent for Muslim Call to Prayer

'New Zealand mourns with you. We are one'

(Newser) - New Zealanders observed the Muslim call to prayer Friday in reflecting on the moment one week ago when 50 worshippers at two Christchurch mosques were slain —an act that an imam told the crowd of thousands had left the country broken-hearted but not broken. In a day without precedent,... More »

Top 10 Happiest Nations

Finland tops World Happiness Report for 2nd year, while US slips

(Newser) - America has fallen in the UN's World Happiness Report , released annually since 2012. The US sits in 19th place, down one spot from 2018 and five spots from 2017, reports US News & World Report . Ryan Cooper at the Week argues there's much to learn from Finland, which... More »

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