24 Jan 2024

Expert on Government's decision to send personnel to Red Sea

From Morning Report, 8:12 am on 24 January 2024

The Government's insisting it is in the country's best interests to deploy defence force personnel to help target the Houthi fighters attacking ships in the Red Sea.

Prime minister Christopher Luxon says 15 percent of global trade usually passes through that stretch of water, but at the moment ships are having to detour thousands-of-kilometres around Africa - at significant cost.

The United Nations' Security Council has condemned the Houthis' attacks, demanding they immediately cease, but has not specifically endorsed such military actions.

The Labour Party says the deployment has 'shades of Iraq' - referring to the US-led invasion in 2003, which New Zealand did not support.

The Green Party says it is horrified New Zealand could be fuelling conflict and further inflame tensions in the Middle East.

Former Auckland University associate professor of politics and international relations Stephen Hoadley spoke to Ingrid Hipkiss.