NEW ZEALAND REJECTS APOLOGY FOR PAST COLONIALISM IN SAMOA

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WELLINGTON, New Zealand (April 28, 2002 – Radio Australia)---New Zealand's Foreign Minister Phil Goff says any apologies offered to Samoa for past errors, as a colonial master, should be weighed against works the New Zealand government has done more recently.

Mr. Goff was reacting to a call from a Samoan historian for New Zealand to apologize for the influenza epidemic in Samoa in 1918 and for the deaths of eight Samoan demonstrators shot dead in 1929.

The call has been backed by New Zealand Opposition MP Anae Arthur Anae, who believes New Zealand should do more than say sorry and look at practical ways to assist Samoa in areas of health, such as kidney dialysis treatment.

Mr. Goff says any apology is unlikely for the period before 1930.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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