Press Release – New Zealand Government
Defence Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman is meeting his Trans-Tasman counterpart, Australian Defence Minister Stephen Smith in Auckland this evening.
The two Ministers are holding a bilateral discussions before they both depart tomorrow to attend the inaugural South Pacific Defence Ministers Meeting being held in Nuku’alofa, Tonga.
“The bilateral with Stephen Smith is part of the on-going excellent working relationship with Australia. The South Pacific Defence Minister’s meeting is a welcome new initiative started by Australia, hosted by Tonga, which New Zealand supports,” said Dr Coleman.
“The meeting in Nuku’alofa, on May 1 and 2 is a positive development to enhance regional co-operation. The discussions will focus on the areas of humanitarian and disaster relief, and maritime surveillance,” he said.