Tracy Watkins at the Dom Post reports:
As Prime Minister John Key heads to Washington for a summit which seeks to rid the world of nuclear weapons, Sir Geoffrey said ship visits would not breach New Zealand’s anti-nuclear laws. The return of the US Navy was not only possible “but desirable”.
Now that NZ ships have visted the US for the first time in 25 years, a return visit makes sense.
There are very few US ships that would be unable to visit, under our legislation.
Some aircraft carriers are nuclear powered, but generally they would not visit anyway – we are too far out of the way, and they are too big for some of our ports to handle. A pity, in a way, as I’d love to tour one.
The other are some of the US submarine fleet. But many of the subs don’t do port visits anyway as their job is to sit at the bottom of the ocean, with some missiles pointed towards North Korea.
So I’m all for a visit by a US ship, just as Canadian, Australian, British and Japanense ships visit here also.