NZ 'no terrorist target'

The Dominion, 28 December 1999

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A CLASSIFIED report detailing an 18-month investigation into the threat of terrorist-type activities in New Zealand at the start of the millennium has described the threat as "very low".

National Bureau of Criminal Intelligence head Detective Inspector Cam Ronald said the threat assessment unit report - "heavily protected under a Government security classification" - showed there was no real threat. "Basically, we don't see the potential for any person or group in New Zealand to commit an act of major disorder or violence in relation to the millennium."

The report was developed in conjunction with local and international agencies investigating those who might have wished to focus world attention on New Zealand to make a statement. "We have looked at the overseas situation and we don't see anything at the moment that gives us cause for concern."

Threat assessments were regularly carried out, Mr Ronald said. Examples included for visiting dignitaries and for big events such as the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, the America's Cup and the World Under-17 Soccer Championships.

Mr Ronald said rumours during the past 12 months, including skinheads planning a mass murder at The Gathering dance festival near Nelson over New Year's, had been discounted. The assessment would be used by police as to where resources would be deployed.

The Dominion, 28 December 1999

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