Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


New Zealand will continuew in Iraq and Afghanistan

23 February 2004 Media Statement

New Zealand will continue humanitarian and reconstruction work in Iraq and Afghanistan

In keeping with the government’s commitment to ongoing humanitarian and reconstruction work overseas, Prime Minister Helen Clark and Minister of Defence Mark Burton today confirmed the next phase in two key Defence Force deployments.

“It is clear, both in Iraq and Afghanistan, that there continues to be a need for the kind of civil reconstruction and support that New Zealand has offered over the past months. In response to this need, we are taking this early opportunity to confirm that the New Zealand Defence Force will continue to lead a Provincial Reconstruction Team in Bamiyan, Afghanistan, for a further twelve months, through to September 2005,” Helen Clark said.

“The engineering detachment of 61 NZDF personnel in Iraq will also undertake a second six-month rotation. This will complete New Zealand’s deployment to work alongside the United Kingdom and other countries, which are currently engaged in humanitarian and reconstruction tasks in Southeast Iraq.”

Minister of Defence Mark Burton said that the early confirmation of these deployments was important for forward planning for the NZDF as a whole.

“As we have always made clear, it is vital to deploy New Zealand’s specialist defence resources where they can be most useful. Our service men and women have once again proved their international reputation for excellence, and today’s announcement is part of ensuring that we manage all of our resources so that their contributions around the world continue to meet that reputation.

“Both Iraq and Afghanistan are challenging environments, and, as is the case with all deployments, the situations will be continue to be closely monitored to ensure the NZDF can continue to undertake the tasks for which they were deployed.”

Prime Minister Helen Clark also praised the achievements of both deployments.

“Our service personnel have clearly made a real impact on the lives of local people and communities. In Afghanistan, the NZDF team have worked effectively to assist the Afghan government to extend its influence beyond Kabul, and built local confidence through making contact with community leaders, gathering information about their reconstruction needs, and providing an opportunity to air any concerns. Our personnel have also made excellent contributions to practical reconstruction projects, such as managing the rebuilding of Bamiyan’s only university.

“In Iraq, our engineers have made important contributions to restoring and establishing core services. They have brought clean drinking water to 200,000 people for the first time in a generation, refurbished schools, repaired bridges, and surveyed and mapped mine fields. During this final six-month rotation, the NZDF will continue this vital humanitarian and reconstruction work.”

Mark Burton said that the second rotation of personnel to Iraq will leave New Zealand in March and return in October. The final twelve-month deployment to Afghanistan will commence in September.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news