/ 23 February 2022

Tonga reconnects with the world

Image source: Getty
Image source: Getty

Tonga’s Prime Minister Siaosi Sovaleni is confident that the undersea communications cable which was damaged in last month’s massive volcanic eruption has been fixed, restoring phone and internet connections. It’s an important milestone in the country’s recovery more than a month after the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apei volcano exploded and shattered the country’s only fibre optic cable. It was thought to have broken in 2 places, but repair crews later discovered the damage was more extensive and had to be rebuilt. Another cable that links to the smaller islands still needs to be fixed. The crisis has revealed that it sucks to rely on one communications cable, and Tongans have renewed calls for a backup system. That would come at a cost as big as the eruption’s sonic boom, but Oz and Kiwiland are helping Tonga assess the cost. Part of the answer could be Elon Musk… SpaceX has been in Fiji establishing a Starlink Gateway, providing internet connectivity through the company’s satellite network. #SquizShortcut

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