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Ed Sheeran

Maori interests overlooked as trade pact signed

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The Comprehensive and Progressive Trans Pacific Partnership was signed this morning in Chile, but some Maori are still concerned their rights and interests will be eroded under the 11-country trade pact.

Lawyer and consultant Willie Te Aho says the Iwi Chairs Forum has twice voted against supporting the deal.

He says they feel that before signing such constitutional documents, Maori rights need to be worked through with the iwi and hapu who signed Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

"That didn’t take place under the previous regime. It hasn't taken place under this Labour-led Government as well and in my view the Labour Government has turned their backs on rghts and interests not only in relation to this international trade agreeement but in relations to fresh water and other matters we have been championing over the previous nine years," Mr Te Aho says.

He says iwi will be prepared to go to court to defend their rights if they feel threatened by changed from the CPTPPA.


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