Date: Wednesday, 18 December 2019
The Foundation Against Islamophobia and Racism (FAIR) is deeply concerned that a far right extremist with a white supremacist ideology is a serving member of the NZDF with access to a range of firearms. The NZDF is the very agency which is supposed to defend the lives of all citizens. This is a major issue, especially knowing this person was questioned by police in the aftermath of the March 15th terrorist attack on the Christchurch mosques.
Azad Khan, spokesperson for FAIR said, “I am worried that this discovery may only be the tip of the iceberg. We don’t know if there are others within the military, police and other agencies who hold similar views or are also members of this group. This white supremacist ideology is deeply entrenched into our colonial structure.”
“The Muslim Community cannot be assured any safety in New Zealand in an environment where such people are empowered by the state to use violence. We want to know what the NZ government is going to do about fascists and neo-nazis in the military and other public service roles.”
“We want this particular case, and the issue more generally, to be treated with the utmost gravity by the NZ government. It isn’t just an issue for the military either but for all government agencies.”
“In Europe, many of these far right groups are either designated as terrorist organisations or have links to violent extremism and racist attacks. That people like this are serving soldiers is frankly terrifying. New Zealand should be moving to designate local white supremacist groups as terrorist organisations.”
FAIR raised this exact possibility with the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Christchurch Terrorist attack in our submission. “We know that this is an issue overseas. With the rise of the far right across the globe, you can be sure that they are enlisting in the military.”