12 Feb 2018

PM asks for investigation into Hit & Run claims

8:34 pm on 12 February 2018

The Prime Minister has asked the Attorney General to investigate the claims made in the book Hit & Run.

Jacinda Ardern is the preferred Prime Minister still.

Jacinda Ardern is the preferred Prime Minister still. Photo: RNZ

The book, by investigative journalists Nicky Hager and Jon Stephenson, alleged six civilians were killed and 15 injured in a raid on two Afghan villages in 2010 by New Zealand's elite soldiers and that the Defence Force subsequently covered that up.

The previous government refused to launch an independent inquiry into the book's claims, saying there was no evidence of war crimes.

In opposition Labour said an independent inquiry was necessary.

And Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she had asked the Attorney General David Parker to look into the matter.

"I don't want to comment on where he will take that before he makes those decisions, but I have tasked him with taking that issue forward," Ms Arden said.

A spokesperson for Mr Parker said he had already received some briefings on the matter but was not yet in a position to make a decision and would continue to consider the matter thoroughly.

The United Nations has asked the government for more information about the raids.

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