“Cabinet’s decision to refuse Defence Minister Peeni Henare’s request to provide lethal aid to Ukraine is incredibly disappointing”, says ACT’s Defence spokesperson James McDowall.
“Henare and the National Party have come to the same position ACT set out more than two weeks ago. This is a desperate situation and Ukraine needs lethal aid as Ukrainians fight for their lives.
“Jacinda Ardern has tried to defend our decision not to send our Javelin missiles by saying it would take three years to replace them. Other countries are replacing their stock with the much more up to date Saab Next Generation Light Anti-Tank Weapons which have a much shorter order time.
“New Zealand might need anti-tank missiles in the next three years but Ukraine needs them in the next three days.
“Our long-term security interest is to be a fully signed-up member of the Western liberal alliance because the world just got a lot more dangerous. New Zealand can't afford to be the weakest link in the West.
“What’s worrying about our current stance is that we’re out of step with our traditional allies. New Zealand cannot afford to be separate from the rest of the free world.
“A country that depends on collective security and a rules-based order can't be seen as the weakest link in the West.”