New Zealand PM can­cels trip

The Myanmar Times - - World -

ZEALAND Prime Min­is­ter John Key can­celled a trip to Ar­gentina yes­ter­day after a pow­er­ful 7.8 earth­quake rocked his South Pa­cific na­tion, but still hopes to at­tend an APEC sum­mit in Peru.

Mr Key was sched­uled to travel to Buenos Aires to­day on a trade mis­sion but said he wanted to stay at home un­til the scale of the quake’s de­struc­tion was known.

“The sit­u­a­tion is still un­fold­ing and we don’t yet know the full ex­tent of the dam­age,” said the New Zealand leader, who has con­firmed at least two quak­ere­lated deaths.

“I be­lieve it is bet­ter that I re­main in New Zealand in the com­ing days to of­fer my as­sis­tance and sup­port un­til we have a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of the event’s full im­pact.”

New Zealand of­fi­cials have apol­o­gised to their Ar­gen­tinian coun­ter­parts and Mr Key said he would per­son­ally call Pres­i­dent Mauri­cio Macri to ex­plain the sit­u­a­tion.

He added that he would still at­tend the Novem­ber 19-20 Asia-Pa­cific Eco­nomic Co­op­er­a­tion in Lima “if cir­cum­stances per­mit”–

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