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New Zealand PM in the US promotes internet censorship, downplays pandemic | #socialmedia | #hacking | #aihp

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is in the middle of a two-week visit to the United States, with the stated aim of boosting trade and tourism, after NZ ditched almost all its COVID-19 restrictions and reopened the border.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern answers a question during a press conference at Parliament in Wellington, New Zealand. (Robert Kitchin/Pool Photo via AP)

Ardern is accompanied by Trade Minister Damien O’Connor and representatives from major NZ companies including dairy exporter Fonterra, meat processor Silver Fern Farms, and kiwifruit exporter Zespri.

In a press release, Ardern made clear that the US relationship “is fundamental to us in political and security terms too.” She will meet President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on Tuesday, and they will discuss New Zealand’s role in the US-NATO war against Russia, and in the growing preparations for war against China.

It is Ardern’s second overseas trip since the pandemic began. Last month, she visited Japan, where she signed an intelligence-sharing agreement, helping to bring Japan into closer alignment with the US-led Five Eyes spy network.

Ardern’s US visit has been overshadowed by the mass shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde. In response to these horrific events, she echoed the banal statements of Biden and other politicians, which are aimed at preventing any serious discussion of their underlying social and political causes.

In her commencement address to Harvard University graduates last Thursday, and during an earlier appearance on the “Late Show,” Ardern was applauded for mentioning New Zealand’s “gun control” measures. The country’s parliament banned military-style assault rifles following the March 15, 2019 terror attack, in which fascist gunman Brenton Tarrant killed 51 people at two Christchurch mosques.

In her Harvard speech, Ardern said nothing about the role of far-right politicians, including Donald Trump, in fuelling Tarrant’s ideology. Instead, she blamed the attack on social media and promoted her government’s push for global internet censorship, dubbed the Christchurch Call to Action.

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