Latest New Zealand News

Welcome to Orcland: Lord of the Rings to film in New Zealand

Sep. 18, 2019 12:29 AM EDT

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Amazon announced Wednesday it will film its upcoming television series "The Lord of the Rings" in New Zealand, marking a return of the orcs, elves and hobbits to the country they became synonymous with over the course of six movies directed by Peter Jackson. Amazon Studios...

Facebook to train AI systems using police video

Sep. 17, 2019 2:34 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook will work with law enforcement organizations to train its artificial intelligence systems to recognize videos of violent events as part of a broader effort to crack down on extremism. Facebook's AI systems were unable to detect live-streamed video of a mass shooting at a mosque in...

Taiwan loses biggest Pacific ally as Solomons embraces China

Sep. 17, 2019 1:16 AM EDT

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Taiwan has lost its largest ally in the Pacific after the Solomon Islands confirmed Tuesday that it is switching diplomatic allegiance to China, and observers say other Pacific nations may soon follow. The switch has geopolitical significance that will be felt as far away as...

New Zealand plans further restrictions to gun ownership

Sep. 13, 2019 12:47 AM EDT

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Six months after a gunman killed 51 people at two Christchurch mosques, New Zealand's government is planning further restrictions to gun ownership. A bill introduced to Parliament on Friday would create a register to track all the guns in the country and require gun owners to...

Grand jury indicts man on capital murder for El Paso attack

Sep. 12, 2019 7:13 PM EDT

EL PASO, Texas (AP) — A man accused of gunning down people at a busy Walmart in El Paso last month was indicted Thursday for capital murder, prosecutors announced. Patrick Crusius, 21, of Allen, Texas, was indicted on one count in connection with the Aug. 3 mass shooting that left 22 dead in the border...

Tonga's prime minister, who nurtured democracy, dies at 78

Sep. 12, 2019 3:05 AM EDT

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Tongan Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva, who helped wrest power from the royal family and bring greater democracy to the small Pacific island nation, died Thursday. He was 78. Pohiva died at the Auckland City Hospital at about 9 a.m. after being medically evacuated to New...

As 1st Asian host, Japan aiming higher at Rugby World Cup

Sep. 12, 2019 1:39 AM EDT

TOKYO (AP) — When Jamie Joseph took on the challenge of coaching Japan for the 2019 Rugby World Cup, the ex-All Blacks forward knew there was much more at stake than results on the field. For Joseph and his players, Japan being the host nation at rugby's showpiece tournament starting next week offers a...

Sexual assault claim against party tests New Zealand leader

Sep. 11, 2019 1:22 AM EDT

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was facing a difficult test of her leadership Wednesday after her party president resigned over the party's handling of a sexual assault complaint. Labour Party President Nigel Haworth's resignation came after a 19-year-old party...

Waititi's 'Jojo Rabbit' finds a mixed response in Toronto

Sep. 9, 2019 4:24 PM EDT

TORONTO (AP) — It's just a few hours before "Jojo Rabbit" will make its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, and writer-director Taika Waititi is still figuring out how to talk about it. "I'm still learning, really, how to describe it," Waititi says. It's no easy task. But, then...

Norway warns of right-wing terror attack in coming year

Sep. 6, 2019 9:58 AM EDT

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Norway's domestic security agency warned Friday about the possibility of a terror attack from right-wing extremists "in the coming year." In a statement, the PST agency said it "now considers it possible that Norwegian right-wing extremists will try to carry out terrorist acts in...