New Zealand oversees U.S. police violence, repeals armed patrolling plan


In the South Pacific, police usually operate without a gun, but in March 2019, armed patrols in Christchurch tested 51 Muslim worshipers.

Armed patrolling plans were canceled by New Zealand police on Tuesday. Following the firing on the Christchurch mosque last year, there has been criticism that American-style militarization is changing.

In the South Pacific, police usually operate without a gun, but in March 2019, 51 Muslim worshipers in Christchurch were blocked by armed patrols after a single gunman killed them.

At the time, the worst mass shootings in modern New Zealand history had "changed our operating environment," police said, and they needed the ability to deploy armed officers swiftly for high-risk incidents.

The move comes amid conflicts between New Zealanders who are not used to seeing armed officers, especially the Maori and Pacific communities, who argue that they are likely to have contact with gun officers.

Only America Must See'

Green Party co-leader Marma Davidson, who has a background in Maori, said last week that the patrolling group was worried about the safety of her two sons.

He said in an open letter to Police Commissioner Andrew Koster, "We should only look to America for how to find violent matters under the military police force."

"This is especially for minorities and people of color."

Even though she argues that patrolling for force is an operational matter, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern also said that "she is totally contrary to the police routine."

Coaster announced Tuesday that armed patrolling would not continue, adding that police had heard backlash from the community.

"It is clear from the inquiry that armed response teams do not match the policing style that New Zealand expects."

Koster said he was committed to "generally unarmed" police and was working with the public.

"That's how people feel - we're the police with the consent of the public, and it's a privilege," he said.

Police practices around the world have been in the news since the arrest of George Floyd, an African-American man who led civil rights protests around the world.

Gunmen: US vs. New Zealand

New Zealand has tightened its gun laws following the Christchurch shootout - including a ban on military-style semi-automatic rifles - overseeing a major firearm purchase of 56,000 weapons.

Statistics vary widely, but gun control advocates place the number of firearms in the US at 393 million or 1.2 per person, compared to 1.5 million in New Zealand or 0.3 per person.

Christchurch shooter Brenton Tarrant is being held in a high-security prison after pleading guilty to 51 murder charges, one of 40 murder charges and a terror case.

Australians who are self-sufficient white supremacists have not yet been sentenced due to delays in the court system due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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