The Australian government has set up a fund to help promote and protect human rights in developing countries, which includes Pacific countries.

A report by Radio New Zealand International states that according to the Australian aid agency, AUSaid, 'around one million US dollars is for grass-roots initiatives and will include help to develop a strong civil society'.

'One beneficiary is the Foundation for the Peoples of the South Pacific International which will be funded to help raise mediation skills at community level in seven Pacific countries'.

The report adds that there will 'also be money for efforts to increase participation by Kiribati women in decision making' and 'in Papua New Guinea there will an emphasis on improving awareness of domestic and sexual violence in Morobe Province, while in Samoa the money will help combat the impact of HIV/AIDS'.