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Iraq Decision: Let Parliament Decide

Iraq Decision: Let Parliament Decide

New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters is calling for a vote in Parliament on whether New Zealand should have military involvement in the fight against ISIS in Iraq.

“We are gravely concerned that Prime Minister John Key is steering New Zealand towards involvement. He is bowing to pressure, as can be seen as he steers away from his previous comments.

“In June he effectively ruled out participation by saying that Iraq is ‘not a place New Zealand wants to be’. He said we had paid a ‘heavy price’ for being involved in Afghanistan, which New Zealand would not repeat ‘in a hurry’.

“Now Mr Key is saying he is looking at options.

“Committing our Defence Force to a new Middle East war should not be decided on the hoof, this is a matter of serious importance, and all members of Parliament must decide.

“Mr Key would do well to remember that when we decided not to commit troops to the Iraq War, we were applauded for being democratic and responsible in our decision making on world problems.

“Surely Mr Key is not taking the line that New Zealand troops should go wherever its traditional allies want them, following on from former National defence spokesman Simon Power’s suggestion in 2004 during the Iraq War.

“As was pointed out at the time, to Mr Power, a sovereign country should stand alone in deciding where to commit its Defence Force.”


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