New Zealand bans doors of Australian nuclear submarines

New Zealand did not lift a ban on nuclear ships from entering its territorial waters, after its ally Australia decided to develop nuclear-powered submarines.

“New Zealand’s position regarding the banning of nuclear-powered ships from our waters remains unchanged,” New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on September 16, referring to plans to build nuclear submarines. of allies close to Australia.

This means that New Zealand will not allow Australia’s future fleet of nuclear submarines to enter its waters.

Ardern said she was informed by her Australian counterpart Scott Morrison of plans to develop nuclear submarines carrying conventional weapons with the help of Britain and the United States. This is the first time the US has shared nuclear engine technology with an ally since it was transferred to the UK in 1958.

The submarine HMAS Rankin participates in exercise AUSINDEX 21 off the coast of Darwin, Australia on September 10.  Photo: Australian Defense Force.

The submarine HMAS Rankin participates in exercise AUSINDEX 21 off the coast of Darwin, Australia on September 10. Photo: BQP Australia.

Ardern said the deal was “mainly around defense hardware and technology”, with little impact on the Five Eyes intelligence alliance including the US, UK, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. “This agreement does not change our security and intelligence relationships with the US, UK and Australia, nor Canada,” Prime Minister Ardern said.

The ban on nuclear-powered ships from entering the territorial waters was introduced by New Zealand after France’s nuclear test in the South Pacific in October 1985. The ban caused the US Navy to suspend port visits in the country for more than 30 years.

The US destroyer USS Sampson arrived in New Zealand at the end of 2016, but was given a special exemption by then-New Zealand Prime Minister John Key because he was “100% confident” that the ship was not powered by nuclear power or carried weapons. nuclear gas.

Nguyen Tien (Follow AFP)

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