Portal:Oceania

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Introduction

An orthographic projection of geopolitical Oceania

Oceania (UK: /ˌsiˈɑːniə, ˌʃi-, -ˈn-/, US: /ˌʃiˈæniə/ (About this soundlisten), /-ˈɑːn-/) is a geographic region comprising Australasia, Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia. Spanning the eastern and western hemispheres, Oceania covers an area of 8,525,989 square kilometres (3,291,903 sq mi) and has a population of 40 million. Situated in the southeast of the Asia-Pacific region, Oceania is the smallest continental grouping in land area and the second smallest in population after Antarctica.

The islands at the geographic extremes of Oceania are Bonin Islands, a politically integral part of Japan; Hawaii, a state of the United States; Clipperton Island, a possession of France; the Juan Fernández Islands, belonging to Chile; and the Campbell Islands, belonging to New Zealand. Oceania has a diverse mix of economies from the highly developed and globally competitive financial markets of Australia and New Zealand, which rank high in quality of life and human development index, to the much less developed economies that belong to countries such as of Kiribati and Tuvalu, while also including medium-sized economies of Pacific islands such as Palau, Fiji and Tonga. The largest and most populous country in Oceania is Australia, with Sydney being the largest city of both Oceania and Australia.

Daily article

Palau boatyard on Malakal Island, Koror - August 1973.

The Republic of Palau is a borderless country in the Pacific Ocean, located some 500 km east of the Philippines. Having emerged from United Nations trusteeship (administered by the United States of America) in 1994, it is one of the world's youngest and least populated nations. It is sometimes referred to in English under its native name Belau.

Palau's most important islands are Angaur, Babeldaob, Koror, and Peleliu, which lie together within the same barrier reef. About two thirds of the population lives on Koror. The population is 20,303 (2005 est.). The capital is Koror, with the same name as the island.

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Selected article

Sunset over Lake Tegano.

Rennell Island, locally known as Mungava, is the main island of two inhabited islands that make up the Rennell and Bellona Province in the Solomon Islands. Rennell Island has a land area of 660 square kilometres (250 sq mi) that is about 80 kilometres (50 mi) long and 14 kilometres (8.7 mi)wide. It is the second largest raised coral atoll in the world with the largest lake in the insular Pacific (Lake Tegano) that is listed as a World Heritage Site.

Rennell Island has a population of about 3000 persons of Polynesian descent who primarily speak Renbelian, Pigin and some English. Rennell and Bellona Islands are the only islands in the Melanesian Solomon Island archipelago classified Polynesian. It is located 236 kilometres (147 mi) South of Honiara. The capital of the Province, Tigoa, is located at the Western end of the island.

The population of Renbel dates before 1400 AD when clansmen left Uvea (now Wallis Island) and crossed the Pacific ocean to settle on the islands. Captain Butler of HMS Walpole discovered the islands in 1801. During the Pacific campaign of World War II Japanese Nakajima A6M2-N Rufe floatplanes operated from Lake Tegano until American PBY Catalinas used the lake as a base after 1943. The Battle of Rennell Island was the last major naval battle of the Guadacanal Campaign which occurred between 29 January 1943 and 30 January 1943.

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