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Te Arawa to begin negotiations for land claims

26 November 2004 Media Statement

Te Arawa to begin negotiations for land claims

The Crown and Nga Kaihautu o Te Arawa Executive Council have agreed to enter into negotiations settling the tribes' land-based historical Treaty of Waitangi claims, Treaty Negotiations Minister Margaret Wilson said today.

Margaret Wilson, on behalf of the Crown, and the Executive Council, representing the larger part of Te Arawa, signed Terms of Negotiation in Rotorua this afternoon.

Te Arawa is the third central North Island group of iwi to sign Terms of Negotiation, with Ngati Manawa and Ngati Whare signing earlier in the year.

"The best way to achieve settlements in a timely way is through negotiating with large natural groups instead of trying to negotiate smaller, piecemeal settlements," Margaret Wilson said. "Direct negotiations with iwi, which occur independently of Waitangi Tribunal findings, also make for quicker settlements.

"This negotiation covers the majority of Te Arawa, which has opted for direct negotiations with the Crown rather than wait for a Waitangi Tribunal report on their historic grievances."

Today's signing follows the Crown's recognition of Nga Kaihautu o Te Arawa Executive Council's mandate to negotiate in April.

“We can now address the grievances of the past and focus on building a stronger future together. I look forward to working with the Executive Council to comprehensively resolve the historical grievances of the iwi."

ENDS

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