web analytics

Were people smugglers paid money to take refuges away from New Zealand?

Written By: - Date published: 8:30 am, October 30th, 2015 - 34 comments
Categories: australian politics, david shearer, International, john key, national, national/act government - Tags: , ,

Amnesty money

Amnesty International has published a report By Hook or by Crook: Australia’s Abuse of Asylum-Seekers at Sea which has rightfully been described as a damning indictment of Australia’s handling of the refugee crisis.

The report reviews Australia’s handling of the refugee boat interception of the Pelabuhan Ratu and the report includes comment on a boat that was apparently heading for New Zealand.  I thought previously that when news of this attempt were published it was just an attempt by the Government to raise panic but after reading the report it appears to be clear that an attempt was actually made.

The Australian action has the ominous sounding title Operation Sovereign Border.  The justification for the interception offered by the Australian authorities was the claim that the boar was under distress and had to be returned to Indonesia so that lives could be preserved.

Amnesty International interviewed the refugees on board, the crew of the boat, the Indonesian Police and conducted research into what actually happened.  The report comments that the evidence from all groups was remarkably consistent.

The ship itself was said to be perfectly adequate for the trip and the crew were sufficiently experienced to conduct the trip.

The ship was initially intercepted and the people warned on May 17, 2015.  Then five days later a further interception occurred.

The executive summary contains this chilling description of what happened:

Australian Navy personnel boarded the boat and remained there. That night all the men were kept outside the cabin by armed Australian personnel. It rained hard for several hours, and salt spray was blown on board. Nevertheless, all 58 men were forced to stay outside with no protection from the elements. The pregnant woman told Amnesty International that she was in a great deal of pain that night – an Australian doctor examined her but just told her to drink water. None of the passengers was given food on the evening of 22 May. On 23 May, they were allowed to eat and the men were permitted to enter the cabin. Australian ships then escorted the boat to Greenhill Island, an Australian territory near Darwin.

While anchored at Greenhill Island, the Australian officials told the passengers that they would be able to bathe if they went on board the Border Force ship. Fifty passengers decided to transfer to the Border Force ship; 15 remained on the original boat. It was at this point, on the original boat, that the crew claim the Australian officials gave them money. The crew told Amnesty International that two of them received 6,000 USD each, and four received 5,000 USD apiece, making a total of 32,000 USD. One of the 15 asylum-seekers who had remained on board described how he saw the captain meeting with the Australians in the boat’s kitchen and saw the captain put a thick white envelope in his shorts’ pocket.

Meanwhile the fifty people who went to the Border Force ship, who included the three children and the pregnant woman, were put into cells and held there for approximately seven days. The cells were cramped and without air conditioning. While on board the Australian ship a number of people developed health problems. One woman said that she fainted three times from the heat and the stress, hitting her head on one occasion. An Australian doctor examined her but said he did not have permission to give her medicine. Another woman who has blood pressure problems claims that she was not allowed to take her own medicine, which had been taken away from her by the Australians. Similarly, a man who suffers from asthma said that he was not permitted to access his inhaler, which had been confiscated, and he suffered asthma attacks while confined to the cell.

The asylum seekers were then transferred to two smaller boats which they thought was not as well equipped as the original boat.  The crew complied but the report notes that they may have been acting under duress.

The incident then took a turn for the worse.

On the way back to Indonesia, the two boats were initially escorted by two Australian Navy ships, two Border Force ships, and six speedboats. The Australians left the boats at around 11 a.m. on 31 May. A few hours later, one of the boats ran out of fuel. The crew members successfully transferred all the passengers onto the other boat, which was then dangerously over-crowded. Video taken by one of the asylum-seekers shows the transfer operation. The crew told Amnesty International that, at this point, the situation was dangerous and the passengers were panicking. The crew managed to steer the boat to Landu Island, an island near Rote Island, where it struck a reef in the late afternoon on 31 May 2015. Local people helped rescue them.

The issue of payments to the crew is then discussed:

The Australian Government has denied that Australian officials paid a boat crew to take people to Indonesia. The denials, made by two Australian government ministers, are challenged by all of the available evidence. Amnesty International has documented the first- hand testimony of the men who received the money. Amnesty International has also documented the testimony of an eye-witnesses to the Australian officials handing over money to the crew. The police who detained the crew members confirm they were found with approximately 32,000 USD and showed Amnesty International the money they confiscated from the crew.

So first hand testimony from the disparate groups and large amounts of cash.  Generally this is pretty good evidence that what they say occurred actually did occur.

During June then Prime Minister Tony Abbott was asked about the payments.  He refused to confirm or deny the boat payment allegation and instead said the government would stop the boats “by hook or by crook”.  I think that you could take his comments as a confirmation that the payments were actually made.

It is certainly arguable that serious breaches of international and/or domestic law have occurred.  The specific breaches could include people smuggling, detention and breaches of various maritime provisions.

New Zealand’s involvement and knowledge of what was happening should be investigated.  Presuming the payments happened it is difficult to understand how the New Zealand authorities could not know what was happening.

John Key was asked a few months ago about the payments and New Zealand’s knowledge of what had happened.  The audio is here.  I could be accused of being a cynic but his explanation does not sound convincing.

David Shearer is right.  The Government needs to assure the public that it has not paid people smugglers to take refugees bound for New Zealand away from New Zealand.

34 comments on “Were people smugglers paid money to take refuges away from New Zealand? ”

  1. savenz 1

    Shocking.

    There are so many breaches now of international law and people and governments are getting away with it. No one wants to investigate (look at what is happening to some of our leading journalists around the world).

    There is no mainstream media to break it too, because most of them are now multinationals all for profit and manipulating the news for their shareholders and advertisers rather than breaking the news.

    In addition, there are so many scandals now, there is ‘ public fatigue’, caused by no clear way to find out what really happened and few who will bring anyone to justice over it and no real media to get to the bottom of the scandal to break the story.

    And ‘public fatigue’ is just what those corrupt politicians and individuals have striven for, to further their agenda.

    And there is also ‘political opposition fatigue’. The opposition don’t seem to be able to cope with the daily abuses of power by others and seem to have retreated themselves. Which also makes them a target for doing so little.

  2. audio is classic key – dunno, to the best of my knowledge, dunno dunno…

    be good to find out the truth but pinning this, and having the evidence to prove that, on key and the gnats is a bridge too far I think

    • mary_a 2.1

      @ marty mars –

      “audio is classic key – dunno, to the best of my knowledge, dunno dunno…”

      These pathetic negative responses by FJK, which he uses regularly in Parliament and through media, indicate he is (was at the time) in full knowledge of what Australian government agencies were doing. If something is vile and corrupt, I can almost guarantee FJK is part of the dirty play!

      • Smilin 2.1.1

        Thats Key all over selling what he knows best “neither confirm or deny ” probably drilled into him when was in training working for the Fed.Or the other one thats not a bank but an agency

  3. Wainwright 3

    Why would boat people even come here? Australia’s easier to get to and a lot harder to miss.

    • dukeofurl 3.1

      Because Australia will immediately detain them in offshore camps, and if they ever do get a visa, they can never sponsor another family member for migration.

  4. Steve Wrathall 4

    When boatloads of welfare-shoppers are heading for your shores there are no “nice” options kiddies. It is much better to demonstrate to them and anyone foolish enough to contemplate following them that they will end up massively worse off, eventually be returned to their country and lose tens of thousands of dollars. Of do you prefer
    they just give up and allow anyone to force their way in , and end up with Europe’s catastrophe?

    • amirite 4.1

      Whoa, was empathy surgically removed from you when you were born?
      God forbid you find yourself in their situation. We’d be all going deaf with your bawling.

      • Steve Wrathall 4.1.1

        If people want to come here they can apply properly from their own countries or thru agencies in the first safe country they get to. Why should we empathize with queue-jumpers who are climbing over the heads of those who are doing it properly? Our borders are protected by Australia’s hard-line policy.

        • McFlock 4.1.1.1

          Our borders are protected by 2000km of ocean.

          Also, please provide evidence that you have ever empathized even with refugees who “are doing it properly” before we bother trying to explain basic humanity to you.

          • Steve Wrathall 4.1.1.1.1

            Rubbish, oceans have been able to be crossed for centuries. Stopping anyone who wants to landing requires force. I am “empathizing” with people who immigrate properly by not allowing others to queue-jump over them, not that I need to prove anything to plaster saints whose advocacy of throwing the doors open would give us Europe’s disaster.

            • maui 4.1.1.1.1.1

              I take it your ancestors weren’t part of the large number of queue jumpers who came here in the 1800s?

              • john

                Generally, as per the written history…they paid to get in.

                • maui

                  Isn’t that what the so called queue jumpers north of aussie and also the syrian refugees do? You don’t get put on a boat or a truck for free.

                  • McFlock

                    lol

                    but the tories aren’t the ones being paid off, so all those payments are wrong

                    • maui

                      Yeah or third world money that isn’t in white men’s hands is just considered monopoly money…

            • McFlock 4.1.1.1.1.2

              Ok, so if crossing the Tasman is trivial and NZ is such a soft touch, why do fuck-all if any boats try? They can simply go in an arc to the north and avoid the Australian patrols. Oceans have been crossed for centuries, so it wouldn’t be a problem at all, according to you. Although I’d be surprised if you had the balls to make the trip yourself.

              Basically, you’re full of shit and your professed empathy for refugees in camps is simply the last thin veil that covers your complete lack of consideration for anyone other than yourself.

              • Steve Wrathall

                NZ is not a soft touch. But is would be if your wise council was followed. Thereby bringing about the chaotic mess we’re seeing in Europe.

                • McFlock

                  pfft. We’re still softer than Aus. So why is it Aus with the “problem”?

                  Answer: more ocean.

  5. john 5

    Simple solution:
    If you don’t want to be treated like an invading army……………..
    STAY HOME!!
    It is NOT compulsory or inevitable that you get in a boat (however you do that, pay or not) and risk the life of you and your family (child abuse) and try and force your way into someone else’s country, expecting them to save you when you get into difficulties.
    If your neighbour had a flood in their bathroom, would you find it acceptable to come home, to find they had broken into your house and were taking a shower in YOUR bathroom??
    Same thing.

    • McFlock 5.1

      Yes. Being bombed, starved, or shot is perfectly analogous to a busted cold tap. /sarc

      • john 5.1.1

        Is being stupid and missing the point deliberately, an occupation with you?
        A skill you learned or were you born with it?

        • McFlock 5.1.1.1

          If you feel you you have been consistently misrepresented, maybe you should try to express better points more clearly.

          Nobody is treating refugees like an invading army.
          Invading armies have rights under the Geneva convention. E.g. after taking them prisoner, you’re not allowed to abandon them in the ocean with half a tank of petrol. You have to provide them medical assistance. You’re supposed to keep them safe in PoW camps, rather than leaving them to be raped in said camp. They’re supposed to be allowed contact wit the red cross. etc, etc, etc.

          You seem to miss the point that these people still find those risks to be preferable than the alternative of staying where they are. So yeah, a certain amount of duress does seem to be implied.

          • tracey 5.1.1.1.1

            In John’s world (based on his comments here and on the other thread this week) everyone is to be considered a liar and/or a thief. Except people like Slater and any member of the National or ACT party.

        • crashcart 5.1.1.2

          In no way does anything you have said allow for breaking of international law.

          SOLAS is an international regulation that even the military is required to obey. It says that you are to assist any ship at sea if it is in distress and you are not to abandon anyone in international waters. If what has been said is true then the law has been broken.

          Are you the type of guy who thinks its OK to break the law if it suits you?

    • Wainwright 5.2

      Dead toddlers on the beaches of Greece aren’t anything like an invading army. Shame on you for making excuses for mistreating people who are fleeing horrors.

      • john 5.2.1

        no they aren’t they were put there by their parents. Their parents killed them.

        • Wainwright 5.2.1.1

          No one puts their children on a boat unless the water is safer than the land.

          • dukeofurl 5.2.1.1.1

            Toddlers are injured all the time in the care of their parents. Its mostly because they have little knowledge of the risks.
            I see parents in front seats of cars holding the their infants. Their belief is that they can ‘hold on’ in an accident, which is of course wrong.
            Regarding the sea , a lot of people in Middle east may have never seen the sea, and are unaware of the dangers. They arent bought up like Kiwis who are mostly a short distance from the sea and have some experience. Even then many here still have liitle experience in a boat of any kind, which leads to our high drowning rate.
            Saying something like the sea is safer means you too have no idea of the risks

            • Wainwright 5.2.1.1.1.1

              I reckon parents in the Middle East know a hell of a lot more about the dangers they face than you. They don’t think they’re going for a wee paddle in the sunshine. But don’t let me stop you and john going around shitting on refugees to make yourselves feel superior.

              • dukeofurl

                Your blithe comments about the sea safer than land just show your ignorance about the sea.
                As though you sitting in a smug little world can speak for refugees is laughable. But go ahead lash out at others, will get you nowhere- but then you would be used to that!

        • crashcart 5.2.1.2

          Do you support countries breaking international law?

    • tracey 5.3

      “If your neighbour had a flood in their bathroom, would you find it acceptable to come home, to find they had broken into your house and were taking a shower in YOUR bathroom??
      Same thing.”

      Seriously?

      Have you read the Dixon decision yet?

  6. tracey 6

    RNZ on morning report this week replayed its questions to John Key about hwat he knew. He seemed quite clear that his “office” didnt have any information. Thereafter they focused on Australia’s behaviour…

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Prime Minister’s Matariki speech 2022
    Matariki tohu mate, rātou ki a rātou Matariki tohu ora, tātou ki a tātou Tīhei Matariki Matariki – remembering those who have passed Matariki – celebrating the present and future Salutations to Matariki   I want to begin by thanking everyone who is here today, and in particular the Matariki ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • First Matariki holiday marked across New Zealand and the world
    Oho mai ana te motu i te rangi nei ki te hararei tūmatanui motuhake tuatahi o Aotearoa, Te Rā Aro ki a Matariki, me te hono atu a te Pirīmia a Jacinda Ardern ki ngā mahi whakanui a te motu i tētahi huihuinga mō te Hautapu i te ata nei.    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Minister to attend second United Nations Ocean Conference in Portugal
    Oceans and Fisheries Minister David Parker will represent Aotearoa New Zealand at the second United Nations (UN) Ocean Conference in Lisbon, Portugal, which runs from 27 June to 1 July. The Conference will take stock of progress and aims to galvanise further action towards Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14, to "conserve and sustainably use ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government supports innovative dairy sheep sector to scale up
    The Government is boosting its partnership with New Zealand’s dairy sheep sector to help it lift its value and volume, and become an established primary industry, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “Globally, the premium alternative dairy category is growing by about 20 percent a year. With New Zealand food ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government supports Buller flood recovery and longer term resilience
    The Government is continuing to support the Buller district to recover from severe flooding over the past year, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty announced today during a visit with the local leadership. An extra $10 million has been announced to fund an infrastructure recovery programme, bringing the total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government outlines plans for future COVID-19 variants
    “The Government has undertaken preparatory work to combat new and more dangerous variants of COVID-19,” COVID-19 Response Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall set out today. “This is about being ready to adapt our response, especially knowing that new variants will likely continue to appear. “We have undertaken a piece of work ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Next steps for NZ UK free trade agreement
    The Government’s strong trade agenda is underscored today with the introduction of the United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement Legislation Bill to the House, Trade and Export Growth Minister Damien O’Connor announced today. “I’m very pleased with the quick progress of the United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement Legislation Bill being introduced ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Five new members join education Youth Advisory Group
    A ministerial advisory group that provides young people with an opportunity to help shape the education system has five new members, Minister of Education Chris Hipkins said today. “I am delighted to announce that Harshinni Nayyar, Te Atamihi Papa, Humaira Khan, Eniselini Ali and Malakai Tahaafe will join the seven ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Address to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons First Meeting of States Party
    Austria Centre, Vienna   [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY] E ngā mana, e ngā reo Tēnā koutou katoa Thank you, Mr President. I extend my warm congratulations to you on the assumption of the Presidency of this inaugural meeting of States Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. You ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt makes sure support workers have right to take pay-equity claim
    The Government is taking action to make sure homecare and support workers have the right to take a pay-equity claim, while at the same time protecting their current working conditions and delivering a pay rise. “In 2016, homecare and support workers – who look after people in their own homes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Targeted second COVID-19 booster a step closer
    A law change passed today streamlines the process for allowing COVID-19 boosters to be given without requiring a prescription. Health Minister Andrew Little said the changes made to the Medicines Act were a more enduring way to manage the administration of vaccine boosters from now on. “The Ministry of Health’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Commerce Commission empowered to crackdown on covenants
    New powers will be given to the Commerce Commission allowing it to require supermarkets to hand over information regarding contracts, arrangements and land covenants which make it difficult for competing retailers to set up shop. “The Government and New Zealanders have been very clear that the grocery sector is not ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Plasterboard taskforce set up to ease shortages
    Ministerial taskforce of industry experts will give advice and troubleshoot plasterboard shortages Letter of expectation sent to Fletcher Building on trademark protections A renewed focus on competition in the construction sector The Minister for Building and Construction Megan Woods has set up a Ministerial taskforce with key construction, building ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • First Matariki public holiday celebrated with a unique broadcasting collaboration
    Minister for Māori Development Willie Jackson and Minister for Māori Crown Relations Te Arawhiti Kelvin Davis announced today the inaugural Matariki public holiday will be marked by a pre-dawn hautapu ceremony at Te Papa Tongarewa, and will be a part of a five-hour broadcast carried by all major broadcasters in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Health volunteers recognised at Parliament
    Volunteers from all over the country are being recognised in this year’s Minister of Health Volunteer Awards, just announced at an event in Parliament’s Grand Hall. “These awards celebrate and recognise the thousands of dedicated health and disability sector volunteers who give many hours of their time to help other ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Trade Minister to travel to Europe, Canada and Australia to advance economic recovery
    New Zealand’s trade agenda continues to build positive momentum as Trade and Export Growth Minister Damien O’Connor travels to Europe, Canada and Australia to advance New Zealand’s economic interests. “Our trade agenda has excellent momentum, and is a key part of the Government’s wider plan to help provide economic security for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister to travel to Europe and Australia
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will leave this weekend to travel to Europe and Australia for a range of trade, tourism and foreign policy events. “This is the third leg of our reconnecting plan as we continue to promote Aotearoa New Zealand’s trade and tourism interests. We’re letting the world know ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Remarks to ICAN Nuclear Ban Forum session “The Ban is the Plan and this is Why”
    [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY] Nga mihi ki a koutou. Let me start by acknowledging the nuclear survivors, the people who lost their lives to nuclear war or testing, and all the peoples driven off their lands by nuclear testing, whose lands and waters were poisoned, and who suffer the inter-generational health ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand leadership contributes to significant progress at the WTO
    New Zealand’s leadership has contributed to a number of significant outcomes and progress at the Twelfth Ministerial Conference (MC12) of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which concluded in the early hours of Friday morning after a week of intense negotiations between its 164 members. A major outcome is a new ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Meth addiction service launched in Eastern Bay of Plenty
    The Government has delivered on its commitment to roll out the free methamphetamine harm reduction programme Te Ara Oranga to the eastern Bay of Plenty, with services now available in Murupara. “We’re building a whole new mental health system, and that includes expanding successful programmes like Te Ara Oranga,” Health ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Creatives in Schools Round 4 open for applications
    Kura and schools around New Zealand can start applying for Round 4 of the Creatives in Schools programme, Minister for Education Chris Hipkins and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Carmel Sepuloni said today. Both ministers were at Auckland’s Rosehill Intermediate to meet with the ākonga, teachers and the professional ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Opening speech for MEETINGS 2022
    It is my pleasure to be here at MEETINGS 2022. I want to start by thanking Lisa and Steve from Business Events Industry Aotearoa and everyone that has been involved in organising and hosting this event. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to welcome you all here. It is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Reconnecting across the Tasman: Australia – Aotearoa New Zealand Foreign Minister Consultations
    Aotearoa New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon Nanaia Mahuta and Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong, met in Wellington today for the biannual Australia - Aotearoa New Zealand Foreign Minister Consultations. Minister Mahuta welcomed Minister Wong for her first official visit to Aotearoa New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Global challenges reflected in March quarter GDP
    The volatile global situation has been reflected in today’s quarterly GDP figures, although strong annual growth shows New Zealand is still well positioned to deal with the challenging global environment, Grant Robertson said. GDP fell 0.2 percent in the March quarter, as the global economic trends caused exports to fall ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • One million New Zealanders vaccinated against flu
    More than a million New Zealanders have already received their flu vaccine in time for  winter, but we need lots more to get vaccinated to help relieve pressure on the health system, Health Minister Andrew Little says. “Getting to one million doses by June is a significant milestone and sits ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ Principals Federation MOOT SPEECH -Friday 10 June 2022 
    It’s a pleasure to be here today in person “ka nohi ke te ka nohi, face to face as we look back on a very challenging two years when you as Principals, as leaders in education, have pivoted, and done what you needed to do, under challenging circumstances for your ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund already delivering jobs and economic boost to the regions
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is successfully creating jobs and boosting regional economic growth, an independent evaluation report confirms. Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash announced the results of the report during a visit to the Mihiroa Marae in Hastings, which recently completed renovation work funded through the PGF. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pre-departure tests removed from June 20
    Travellers to New Zealand will no longer need a COVID-19 pre-departure test from 11.59pm Monday 20 June, COVID-19 Response Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. “We’ve taken a careful and staged approach to reopening our borders to ensure we aren’t overwhelmed with an influx of COVID-19 cases. Our strategy has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Foreign Minister to attend CHOGM
    Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta will travel to Rwanda this week to represent New Zealand at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Kigali. “This is the first CHOGM meeting since 2018 and I am delighted to be representing Aotearoa New Zealand,” Nanaia Mahuta said.  “Reconnecting New Zealand with the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Joint Statement: Agreement on Climate Change, Trade and Sustainability (ACCTS) at MC12
    We, the Ministers for trade from Costa Rica, Fiji, Iceland, New Zealand, Norway and Switzerland, welcome the meeting of Agreement on Climate Change, Trade and Sustainability (ACCTS) partners on 15 June 2022, in Geneva to discuss progress on negotiations for the ACCTS. Our meeting was chaired by Hon Damien O’Connor, New Zealand’s Minister for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Chief Censor appointed
    Internal Affairs Minister Jan Tinetti has today announced Caroline Flora as the new Chief Censor of Film and Literature, for a three-year term from 20 July. Ms Flora is a senior public servant who has recently held the role of Associate Deputy‑Director General System Strategy and Performance at the Ministry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government tackles elder abuse
    Eleven projects are being funded as part of the Government’s efforts to prevent elder abuse, Minister for Seniors Dr Ayesha Verrall announced as part of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.  “Sadly one in 10 older people experience elder abuse in New Zealand, that is simply unacceptable,” Ayesha Verrall said. “Our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New connectivity funding for more rural homes and businesses
    More New Zealand homes, businesses and communities will soon benefit from fast and reliable connectivity, regardless of where they live, study and work,” Minister for the Digital Economy and Communications, David Clark said today. “The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us time and again how critical a reliable connection is for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Phil Twyford to attend Nuclear Ban Treaty meeting
    Disarmament and Arms Control Minister Phil Twyford will lead Aotearoa New Zealand’s delegation to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) First Meeting of States Parties in Austria later this month, following a visit to the Netherlands. The Nuclear Ban Treaty is the first global treaty to make nuclear ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Australian Foreign Minister to visit for talks
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta will this week welcome Australian Foreign Minister, Senator the Hon. Penny Wong on her first official visit to Aotearoa New Zealand as Foreign Minister. “I am delighted to be able to welcome Senator Wong to Wellington for our first in-person bilateral foreign policy consultations, scheduled for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government’s School Investment Package supports 4,500 projects
    State schools have made thousands of site, infrastructure and classroom improvements, as well as upgrades to school sports facilities and playgrounds over the past two and a half years through a major government work programme, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. The School Investment Package announced in December 2019 gave ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PM Ardern shares warm meeting with Samoa PM
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern had a warm and productive meeting with Samoa Prime Minister Fiamē Naomi Mata’afa in Wellington, today. The Prime Ministers reflected on the close and enduring relationship the two countries have shared in the 60 years since the signing of the Treaty of Friendship, and since Samoa ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt acting to increase supermarket competition
    “Food price data shows New Zealanders pay too much for the basics and today’s figures provide more evidence of why we need to change the supermarket industry, and fast," Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister David Clark says. Stats NZ figures show food prices were 6.8% higher in May 2022 compared ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New standalone integrity entity for sport
    An independent body to strengthen and protect the integrity of the sport and recreation system is to be established. “There have been a number of reports over the years into various sports where the athletes, from elite level to grassroots, have been let down by the system in one way ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New baby unit opened at Waitakere Hospital
    Parents of babies needing special care can now stay overnight at Waitakere Hospital, thanks to a new Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU), Health Minister Andrew Little said today. The new SCBU, which can care for 18 babies at a time and includes dedicated facilities for parents, was opened today by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago