4 May 2021

New Zealand will call for Covid-19 origins to be clear - Ardern

9:56 am on 4 May 2021

New Zealand will join international calls to discover the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says.

Jacinda Ardern speaks at Wellington Airport.

Jacinda Ardern speaks at Wellington Airport. Photo: Dom Thomas

Ardern told Morning Report: "When it comes to the issue of us understanding what happened in the lead up to the outbreak of Covid-19 and better preparing ourselves for the future, we are absolutely one of the many advocates for having that understanding".

"Covid-19 is one of a number of potential viruses that have threatened to become pandemics in recent times. It will not be the only that we face," she said.

"Making sure that as an international community we work much more closely together is of critical importance to us."

This evening, Ardern will be part of an international panel of heads of state discussing preparing for future disease outbreaks.

"I hope that New Zealand will continue to play a lead role in advocating for change so that the world does not experience this again," she said.

Ardern's comments come in the wake of New Zealand making diplomatic waves this week.

Yesterday, Ardern said New Zealand's political interests are becoming harder to reconcile with China's.

Chinese ambassador Wu Xi issued a rebuke to the government to not interfere in its internal affairs.

On Sunday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade apologised to India after a [https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/world/441727/india-covid-19-delhi-calls-for-army-help-amid-crisis

wayward tweet was sent] asking the youth wing of the country's main opposition party for help providing an oxygen cylinder.

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