Government to deploy fifth P-3 Orion in support of UN sanctions

Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Defence Minister Peeni Henare today announced that New Zealand will deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion (P-3) aircraft in support of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions on North Korea.

The resolutions, adopted unanimously by the UNSC between 2006 and 2017, aim to persuade North Korea to denuclearise and abandon its ballistic missile capabilities.

“Aotearoa New Zealand is committed to supporting the maintenance of peace and security on the Korean Peninsula,” Nanaia Mahuta said.

“Our deployments are part of ongoing international efforts to fully implement United Nations Security Council resolutions. They support the goal of the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearisation of North Korea,” Nanaia Mahuta said.

The deployment will be the fifth, following deployments in April 2021, October 2020, October 2019 and September 2018.

“This P-3K2 deployment will help detect and deter actions that directly contravene United Nations Security Council sanctions on North Korea, such as ship-to-ship transfers of illicit material at sea,” Peeni Henare said.

“New Zealand will also have the opportunity to work in close coordination with a number of likeminded partners through these continued efforts,” Peeni Henare said.

The aircraft will again operate out of Kadena Air Base in Japan and will conduct maritime air patrols over international waters in North Asia during November.

The NZDF personnel deploying will comply with all COVID-19 protocols upon arrival in Japan, and again on their return to New Zealand.