World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

AERIAL PATROLS RESUME OVER NIUE AND COOK ISLANDS WATERS

The New Zealand Defence Force is working with the National Maritime Coordination Centre and Pacific partners to resume aerial patrols in the Pacific following concerns about illegal fishing in the region.

A Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P-3K2 Orion will this week carry out aerial surveillance over the Exclusive Economic Zones of Niue and the Cook Islands.

RNZAF crew routinely carry out aerial patrols in coordination with maritime patrols by host nations.

However, due to travel and border restrictions put in place as part of the response to the global Covid-19 pandemic, the frequency of patrols reduced and there are concerns illegal activity may be going undetected.

The crew have been given permission to carry out overnight logistics stops in the Cook Islands, so three days of patrols can be carried out in the eastern Pacific.

Air Component Commander Air Commodore Tim Walshe said the air crew would continue to follow health guidelines such as screening prior to departure as well as personal hygiene measures and careful restrictions on movements while in the Cook Islands. Any other local requirements of the Cook Islands would also be strictly observed.

“The Orion crew will detect and report illegal, unregulated or unreported fishing activity within the Exclusive Economic Zones of Niue and the Cook Islands. We routinely support Niue and the Cook Islands with patrols and are resuming these given current uncertainty about illegal fishing activity. If it is the case that illegal activity has increased, that has implications for the sustainability of fish stocks.’’

The crew will also take the opportunity to look for unreported or undetected pleasure craft that are potentially being used for transnational organised crime such as drug smuggling. Any information gathered is provided to the relevant authorities.

``We are also ready to resume support to other Pacific nations if asked to do so.’’

The crew will also fly over the Kermadec Islands and provide an update to the Department of Conservation, after DOC staff on Raoul Island were evacuated ahead of Covid-19 border and travel restrictions.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Covid-19: WHO Reports Largest Single Day Increase In Cases

The World Health Organization ( WHO ) reported the largest single-day increase in coronavirus cases over the course of Sunday, registering more than 183,000 new infections in 24 hours, bringing the total to some 8.8 million cases worldwide, with more than ... More>>

China: National Security Law Must Not Become A Weapon Of Fear

Responding to today’s passing of a national security law for Hong Kong by the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress, the head of Amnesty International’s China Team, Joshua Rosenzweig, said: 'The passing of the national ... More>>

UN: Syrians ‘face Unprecedented Hunger Amid Impending COVID Crisis’

© UNICEF/Delil Souleiman | A young boy photographed at Al-Hol refugee camp in the northeastern desert of Syria. (July 2019) Syrian communities devastated by years of civil war now face an “unprecedented” hunger crisis, just as urgent action ... More>>

Israel/OPT: Annexation Plan Promotes ‘Law Of The Jungle’ And Must Be Stopped

The Israeli authorities must immediately abandon plans to further 'annex' territory in the occupied West Bank which breach international laws and exacerbate decades of systematic human rights violations against Palestinians there, Amnesty ... More>>