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New Zealand Today Welcomed Terrorism

9 December 2004

New Zealand Today Welcomed Terrorism

Rt Hon Winston Peters says the Zaoui bail outcome today means that New Zealand has thrown open its doors to international terrorism and placed a welcome mat at the border to any extremists who want to come here.

Mr Peters said it was “outrageous” that an elected Government capitulated before the Supreme Court in relation to Zaoui’s bail hearing, and effectively handed the country’s security arrangements to a group of unelected judges and a religious order.

“The Government should never have let this situation develop. We warned that this could happen if the law was not changed and the Supreme Court has confirmed our worst fears.

“Zaoui is a convicted criminal. He was kicked out of France, Belgium and Switzerland. He does not qualify for refugee status because of his convictions, yet he is being treated better than law abiding, taxpaying New Zealanders.

“This is a day of shame for this Labour-led government and the Supreme Court it created despite repeated warnings about the lack of international legal expertise in this country.”

Mr Peters said that New Zealand was today sentenced to pariah status among Western democracies and the only way out of this situation would be to deport Zaoui immediately.

“While other nations increase their security against terrorism, we reduce ours and what is more, we do it through our highest court.

“We now have a religious order handling security in New Zealand. How silly we must look to our allies.

“We are under no international obligation to accept Zaoui. The Government must act in the interests of New Zealanders, not on behalf of an individual whose extreme views have no place in this country,” said Mr Peters.

ENDS

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