Media Release: Will there be justice for Fatima and others?

From Auckland Peace Action
Date 11 April 2018

“Auckland Peace Action (APA) tentatively welcomes the government’s announcement to hold an inquiry into the allegations contained in the book Hit and Run that six civilians were killed and 15 injured in a raid on two Afghan villages in 2010 by the NZSAS,” said Valerie Morse member of APA.

“It is Auckland Peace Action’s view that any inquiry should be prepared to travel to Afghanistan to hear evidence from the people who were directly affected and gather information on the ground including the parents of 3-year-old Fatima who was killed in the raid. This is the kind of process we would expect of any proper inquiry. We cannot expect to gain any truth from simply questioning soldiers and examining documents.”

“APA also demands that this be a public, transparent inquiry. Nebulous claims to ‘national security’ must not be allowed to obscure the proceedings from genuine public examination.”

“Finally, the inquiry must widened to include the entire duration of the New Zealand deployment to Afghanistan. This is because there are other very serious allegations regarding the conduct of New Zealand troops in other raids including that in the village of Band-E-Timur that have never been subject to any inquiry, and which also resulted in deaths of civilians.”

“We are pleased that the government is willing to do what the National Party was not. There is no more extreme matter of state than sending people to kill or die in war. Worryingly, however, Attorney-General David Parker’s comments upon announcing the inquiry questioning evidence in Hit and Run give the impression that he is predisposed towards exonerating the NZDF from the outset. We need to know that this inquiry isn’t just going to be a big whitewash of the NZDF.”
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