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

 


Goff: Regional security threats post 9/11

Hon Phil Goff - Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade

8 December 2004

Speech Notes

Regional security threats post 9/11

Opening address - Asia New Zealand Foundation seminar on regional security
James Cook Hotel, Wellington
8.45am, 8 December 2004

Thank you for the opportunity to open this seminar. It promises to be a stimulating one with an impressive list of speakers.

I have been asked to give a brief overview on regional security threats after the terrorist attacks of 9/11.

The events of September 11, 2001 redefined the way in which the developed world perceived threats to its security. The shocking and spectacular nature of the coordinated attacks on that day traumatised countries that, since the end of the Cold War, had perceived themselves relatively safe from external threats.

In particular it challenged the sense of American invulnerability.

In our own region, the attack on Bali a year later highlighted the vulnerabilities in our part of the world.

The coordination of international terrorism and the fact that there appeared to be no bottom line to the carnage terrorists were prepared to inflict further focused our minds.

Beslan reinforced this threat and in the background has lingered the nightmare scenario of the consequences should terrorists acquire weapons of mass destruction.

In response, New Zealand has exerted enormous energy and effort, domestically, regionally and internationally to strengthen protection against the threat that terrorism poses to ourselves and to the world.

At home, legislation was passed to ensure we were compliant with all 12 UN anti-terrorism conventions. Provisions to prevent the financing of terrorism were put in law and measures introduced to ensure the security of our borders and trade.

We have committed ourselves heavily to Operation Enduring Freedom, deploying ground, naval and air assets to Afghanistan and the Gulf region. We have participated through the Asean Regional Forum and APEC to institute stronger security measures and cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region, and worked through the Pacific Islands Forum and bilaterally to help Pacific Island Countries to do likewise.

We have worked on responses to situations which give rise to terrorism, the latest initiative being our participation in the Interfaith Dialogue this week in Jakarta.

This event highlights the common values and commitment to humanity of the great religions of the world, and aims to foster greater mutual respect, tolerance and harmony, isolating minority elements that preach extremism.

While terrorism and efforts to counter it have a high profile in today's world, other threats exist in our region that also have consequences for our wellbeing and security. These include contagious diseases such as HIV/Aids and TB and non-infectious diseases such as diabetes.

Preventative and responsive measures need to be in place to prevent an epidemic such as that afflicting Africa from affecting our own region. Environment degradation and unsustainable development pose other threats to our wellbeing. Environmental problems such as global warming cross national boundaries and need a regional and global response.

Poverty, ethnic conflict, poor governance, corruption and abuse of human rights also pose risks to the stability and prosperity of the region. These issues require international cooperation to resolve and the APEC decision this year on a course of action against corruption is a step in the right direction.

Drug trafficking, people smuggling, arms trafficking and trans-national crime also challenge regional security, and need to be addressed through regional actions such as the Bali process on people smuggling.

Regionally issues such as the acquisition of a nuclear capability by North Korea, the tensions between China and Taiwan, continuing denial of democracy and human rights in Myanmar and the need to consolidate the peace processes in the Solomon Islands, Bougainville and East Timor remain on the agenda.

While the effects of September 11 were profound, the regional and international community need also to mobilise to address these other issues that challenge our aspirations for security, peace and stability.

The list of problems appears daunting. What is positive however is the way in which countries in the Asia-Pacific region are increasingly cooperating to find solutions.

The Asean Regional Forum has continued to work constructively to build confidence on security issues. APEC has also broadened its focus, with member economies acknowledging that economic prosperity and regional security are mutually dependent.

New Zealand's political and economic relationships with Asia have continued to strengthen, epitomised by recent developments such as the Asean summit with Australia and New Zealand in Vientiane, the opening of free trade negotiations with Asean and China and the conclusion of an FTA with Thailand.

Given constraints of time, my comments have touched only briefly on the wide-ranging security issues that affect our region.

I hope that the seminar today will allow you to discuss and debate these important matters in greater depth.

I wish you well for a stimulating and successful day.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news