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New Zealand Sovereignty Not Negotiable

26 May 2003

Jim Anderton MP, Leader, Progressives

New Zealand Sovereignty Not Negotiable


“New Zealand's sovereignty is not negotiable, nor is it available to be traded away in order to keep other governments happy”, says Progressive leader Jim Anderton.

"In the past two months, we've had some extraordinary insights into the extent to which National and ACT would be prepared to bargain away our nationhood in some fruitless effort to please Washington.

“Those parties would throw away our right to determine our own affairs as a nation at the drop of a hat if they ever had the chance," Jim Anderton said.

“New Zealand has an impeccable record as a sovereign nation in international peace-keeping and fighting terrorism, including 33 UN sponsored peace missions and including some strong participation in multilateral Operation Enduring Freedom.

“Last week, an unidentified United States "source" was reported to have said that America would not reduce its punitive tariff barriers on our dairy and meat exports because Washington was displeased by New Zealand's support for a fair rules-based multilateral system to resolve disputes between nations.

“In particular, the unnamed source implied there would be no fair trade deal between America and New Zealand because the New Zealand Parliament had not wanted any attack on Iraq to proceed until such an attack was sanctioned by the United Nations Security Council.

“National and ACT have parroted this position.

"Unlike National and ACT, this Coalition Government will not send our soldiers off to war on the off-chance that it will increase our chances of selling agricultural or any other products.

“In this case, they are not only irresponsible they are misled. The multinational corporate agricultural interests that benefit from the US state-funded subsidies and welfare don’t want a fair trade deal which would allow our farmers to sell their unsubsidised produce to American consumers,” Jim Anderton said.

“The Progressive leader said it seems the only way we'll get the corporate welfare addicts in America to adhere to agreeing to lower their punitive and unfair trade barriers is if it is done under the auspices of the multilateral World Trade Organisation.

"The position of National and ACT, and the unnamed U.S. source, is absurd.
“Any suggestion that New Zealanders somehow haven't pulled their weight in the war against terrorism doesn't stack up against the historic record," Jim Anderton said.

“New Zealand has contributed far more than most to the war against international terrorism. New Zealand's contribution to fighting the causes and effects of terrorism are impeccable and extend over half a century, the Progressive leader said.


ENDS

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