Royal Commission Report on Christchurch Massacre due next week

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Wellington, November 20, 2020

Al Noor Islamic Centre, one of the Mosques in Christchurch where the massacre occurred on March 15, 2020 (AFP Photo)

The Royal Commission has completed its inquiry process and is focused on producing the Report. All interviews, meetings, evidence and analysis work are now complete.

Commissioners and the Secretariat conducted close to 400 meetings and interviews in the course of the inquiry since it was established on April 8, 2019.

Commissioner Sir William Young said, “We want to thank everyone who interacted with the Royal Commission throughout the inquiry, providing vital information, insights and expertise. Many of those interviewed, were summonsed to appear and provided evidence under oath.  We used interviews to explore relevant matters, to test evidence or to put direct questions to elicit information and answers,” he said.

Commissioner Jacqui Caine said, “ Our Report has been informed by months of gathering evidence, talking to community members and analysing submissions,” says Commissioner Jacqui Caine.

Extensive interviews held

The Royal Commission met with or interviewed affected whānau, survivors and witnesses of the terrorist attack, community organisations and individuals, current and former members of parliament, chief executives of Public sector agencies, Public sector employees, local government representatives, academics, subject matter specialists, integrity agencies and international experts. 

In recent months we held hearings, meetings and interviews with people and organisations including (1) Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister and Minister National Security and Intelligence Jacinda Ardern (2) Dr Anja Dalgaard-Nielsen (Chair), Jacob Ravndal, Jakob Ilum and Helge Renå, Members of the Evaluation Committee investigating the Norwegian Police Security Service’s handling of a 2019 right-wing terrorist attack at Al-Noor Islamic Centre in Bærum, Norway (3) Christopher Finlayson, former Attorney-General and Minister Responsible for the Government Communications Security Bureau and the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (4) Professor Sir Peter Gluckman, Director, Koi Tū: the Centre for Informed Futures (5) Nicky Hager, Author and investigative Journalist (f) Brendan Horsley, Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (6) John Key, former Prime Minister and Minister for National Security and Intelligence (7) Andrew Kibblewhite, Chief Executive, Ministry of Justice and former Chief Executive, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (8) Rebecca Kitteridge, Director-General, New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (9) Andrew Little, Minister Responsible for the Government Communications Security Bureau and the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service and Minister of Justice (10) Greg Nicholls, New Zealand Police (11) Human Rights Commission (12) Islamic Women’s Council of New Zealand (13) Religious Communities Leadership Forum and (14) Spark New Zealand

Subjects of Confidentiality Orders

As is the case with others who have been interviewed by the Royal Commission, Ms Ardern, Mr Finlayson, Mr Key and Mr Little have been made the subject of confidentiality orders under the Inquiries Act 2013 and are not at liberty to discuss the content of the interview they have had with the Royal Commission.

The Royal Commission’s Report will be presented to the Governor-General on November 26, 2020. The Inquiries Act 2013 directs that the Report must subsequently be presented by the appropriate Minister (in this instance the Minister of Internal Affairs) to the House of Representatives as soon as practicable.

The Royal Commission’s Report has been written so that it can be published in full without the need for redaction to protect national security or privacy or confidentiality matters. 

For clarity, the Report will not be released by the Royal Commission on November 26, 2020.

It is for the Government to decide how and when to publicly release the Royal Commission’s Report.

Source: Department of Internal Affairs, Government of New Zealand. 

The above Report has been sponsored by 

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