NZ Spy Dept to Assess Domestic Security Threats

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TereHarrisonC| by Tere Harrison | One of New Zealands security agencies now has the power to investigate domestic security threats. The National Assessment Bureau (NAB) is now able look at national and international security threats, previously as the External Assessments Bureau (EAB) it looked solely at international threats.

Prime Minister John Keys says the change was made to ensure intelligence agencies were able to protect people for the forth coming Rugby World Cup.

Concerns have been raised at the lack of public consultation on the change. Maori and activist communities say the change is in response to Police failure to lay charges under the Terrorism Suppression Act following Police raids on Ruatoki and other communities in Oct 2007.

Police cited the Terrorism Suppression Act (TSA) in the raids, but the Solicitor-General ruled that the Act was impossible to apply to the domestic circumstances and therefore ruled there was insufficient evidence to lay charges.

Those arrested in the Ruatoki Raids now face firearms and drugs charges under the Arms Act. Their trial date is set for August, 2011 in Auckland and will coincide with the Rugby World Cup.

Amendments are before Parliament to change the TSA so that it can be applied to domestic threats, concerning activist groups who believe its an attempt to suppress legitimate opposition.

Tuhoe have laid complaints with the Independent Police Complaints Authority alleging Police misconduct and the Human Rights Commission and the United Nations are investigating complaints of discrimination and violation of human rights.

1 COMMENT

  1. “Those arrested in the Ruatoki Raids now face firearms and drugs charges under the Arms Act.”

    No one is facing drugs charges. Five people are however charged with being a member of a organised criminal group. What a load of rubbish! Drop the charges!

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