October 24, 2023
Stop being a puppet over Israel says Waititi
Te Pāti Māori leader Rawiri Waititi says New Zealand needs to impose sanctions on Israel over the war on Gaza similar to those imposed on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.
The party has called for the expulsion of the Israeli Ambassador unless there is an immediate ceasefire.
He says he’s sick of New Zealand being a puppet of its collaborators in the Five Eyes spying network.
“When you’re mana motuhake, I don’t want to have strings tied to anybody. Whether it’s being driven by London, Washington, Paris, Ottawa, or even Canberra. I hate the fact we’ve got these relationships and they determine how we see the world and how we should be playing in regard to our role in world peace,” Mr Waititi says.
Meanwhile, Māori supporters of Israel say Te Pāti Māori is spreading misinformation, and inciting ill-feeling against Jewish communities.
The group, which includes Holocaust & Antisemitism Foundation Aotearoa co-founder Sheree Trotter of Te Arawa, Ngāpuhi me Ngāti Whātua kuia and kaumatua Jacqueline and Wally Te Huia, and former National MP and New Zeal Party leader Alfred Ngaro, say Te Pāti Māori blames Israel for the explosion at a Gaza hospital that killed 500 people.
They says overwhelming evidence shows it was caused by a missile fired by Islamic Jihad.
As Māori leaders they stand by Israel and its right to defend its territories and citizens.
Palestinian authorities say Israeli strikes since October 7 have killed more than 5000 people in Gaza and wounded more than 15,200, including 436 on Sunday alone.
In Israel, more than 1,400 people have been killed and more than 5,400 injured since the attack by Hamas militants kicked off the upsurge in the war.