Rt Hon Jenny Shipley
Leader of the Opposition
Thursday 28 September
PM should focus on the issues, not personal abuse
Helen Clark should deal with the issues confronting New Zealand and stop abusing anyone who has a contrary point of view
to her Government, Opposition Leader Jenny Shipley said today.
"Her suggestion that I was sabotaging her meeting with the Australian Prime Minister is ridiculous and shows a degree of
"Three key issues - defence, currency union and immigration policy - which I have commented on after my meetings have
all been widely discussed in the media in recent weeks.
"All three issues have been the subject of sharp public comments by Australian Ministers since mid-August. To have three
such comments made publicly by Australian Ministers is unusual: John Moore on the decision of the New Zealand Government
not to proceed with the Orions' upgrade; Peter Costello on New Zealand's interest in entering into a currency union; and
Philip Ruddock on the risks to Australia as a result of the immigration amnesty announced by the New Zealand Government
"The concerns and anxieties publicly expressed by Australian Ministers were naturally discussed in my meetings
"All three are significant in terms of New Zealand's future economic and regional stability and success.
"I call on Helen Clark to debate the important issues of New Zealand's long -term defence arrangements between New
Zealand and Australia and encourage her to facilitate public debate rather than abuse people like me who raise the
issues," Mrs Shipley said.