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Maori Council offside with attack on Vatican
NZ First MP Shane Jones Photo on file

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New Zealand First MP Shane Jones says the Màori Council’s executive director is attention seeking with an attack on the Catholic Church.

Matthew Tukaki has written to the Pope to ask that the formally renounce the doctrine of discovery, a 15th century idea that European nations could claim lands if they were not occupied by Christians.

The doctrine is being blamed by some indigenous activists for the evils of colonialism, even through Portugal and Spain started building their empires before it was issued and England broke with the Catholic Church 200 years before James Cook arrived in New Zealand.

Mr Jones says Mr Tukaki has overstepped the mark.

"I know many Màori who are incredibly proud of their Catholic whakapapa. It's blended as part of identity. The New Zealand Màori Council needs to focus on the pockets of dysfunctionalism that are blighting the lives of some of our people and stop grandstanding and don't utter another word attacking one of the established churches of New Zealand," he says.

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