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Re: Dunne Release On Chinese Embassy

The following response to United Future Leader Peter Dunne’s release on the Taiwan delegates’ letters from the Chinese Embassy was received from the office of Foreign Affairs Minister Phil Goff. Mr Goff is in Stockholm, where it is the middle of the night, and he has not had a chance to respond to Mr Dunne’s release. - The Scoop Editor

Dunne release on Chinese Embassy comments on MPs visit to Taiwan

*A Chinese Embassy official met with MFAT earlier this week to seek some clarification over the visit by Mr Dunne and the other MPs.

*There appeared to be some concern that this had been an official Government visit.

*It was clarified to the Chinese official that this was not the case.

*It was however reiterated to the official that New Zealand MPs have the right as individuals to visit Taiwan.

*This in no way contravenes New Zealand's adherence to a 'one China' policy.

I note Mr Dunne's media release doesn't mention that the letter was written and received AFTER the MPs visit. The letter could hardly be construed then as warning the MPs against visiting Taiwan as Mr Dunne claims.

Mr Dunne never approached MFAT about his visit and the Ministry in fact only learnt of it via a fax from Taiwan. Mr Dunne was offered a briefing by MFAT on New Zealand's policy, but this was declined.

John Tulloch
Press Secretary

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