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Cook Islands Gambling

Cook Islander Gambling

Although there are no casinos, gambling is legal in the Cook Islands. This mostly takes the form of residents playing the lottery, but a few pokies (video poker machines) may be found. A number of online gambling companies have also made their home on the Cook Islands, but island law prohibits them from taking bets from local residents.

Lottery in the Cook Islands

Residents of the Cook Islands are eligible to play the lottery through Oz Lotteries. Located at OzLotteries.com, this website offers the following lotto choices.

- Daily Keno (held at 7 pm)
- Wednesday Lotto (held at 8:30 pm)
- Thursday Power ball (held at 8:30 pm)
- Saturday Lotto (held at 8:30 pm)
- Monday Lotto (held at 8:30 pm)
- Tuesday Super 7ís OzLotto (held at 8:30 pm)

Cook Islands Information

The Cook Islands are made up of 15 islands in the South Pacific Ocean. They are located northeast of New Zealand and between Fiji and French Polynesia.

With a total land area of 92.7 square miles, the Cook Islands have a free association with New Zealand. The main population lives on the island of Rarotonga. Defense of the islands is left up to New Zealand.

The islands are divided into the Southern Cook Islands and the Northern Cook Islands. The majority of the population lives on the Southern Cook Islands.

Southern islands include:

- Aitutaki
- Atiu (also known as The Island of Birds)
- Mangaia
- Mauke
- Rarotonga (contains the capital, Avarua)
- Palmerston Island
- Manuae
- Mitiaro
- Takutea

Northern islands include:

- Manihiki
- Nassau
- Penrhyn Island
- Pukapuka
- Rakahanga
- Suwarrow

The islands were first sighted in 1596 by Spanish explorer Alvaro de Mendana. They were not explored until Captain James Cook landed in 1773 and named them the Hervey Islands. They would be renamed in his honor fifty years later.

In 1821, English and Tahitian missionaries became the first non-native settlers of the islands. It was then made a British protectorate in 1888 and annexed to New Zealand in 1901.

In 1965, they became a self-governing territory, and Albert Henry was elected the islandís first prime minister. In 1974, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II. However, he was found guilty of electoral fraud in 1979 and stripped of both his knighthood and position.

Six people were killed in 1997 when Cyclone Martin struck the island chain. Eighty percent of the buildings on the island were also destroyed.

After establishing ties with China, the prime minister of the islands made a visit there in 2004. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao granted $16 million in development aid to the Cook Islands.

It is estimated that 90,000 tourists visit the Cook Islands each year. This has resulted in tourism being their number one industry.

The most popular sport on the Cook Islands is rugby union. This is followed by football (soccer) and rugby league.

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