The Green Party supports strategic defence policy that furthers non-violent objectives and supports peace. We will ensure that peacekeeping, disaster relief, humanitarian work and environmental monitoring make up the core of the NZDF’s work and that its equipment should be appropriate to these activities. We will oppose the NZDF assisting ‘coalitions of the willing’ convened outside of legitimate international legal structures as a subordinate force. 


An Aotearoa New Zealand secure from external threat, working to promote conflict prevention and peaceful conflict resolution across the globe.

Values and Principles

Decisions relating to defence and peacekeeping operations must uphold the following values and principles:

  • Honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi: The tino rangatiratanga of all hapū and iwi to to take care of their traditional lands and people should be central to the defence of Aotearoa New Zealand. 
  • Ecological Wisdom: The interconnection of conflict and security with environmental issues and inequitable distribution of resources should underpin defence policy. 
  • Social Responsibility: Defence personnel should conduct themselves in an ethical manner which is respectful of the local communities and cultures that they interact with and consistent with international human rights law.
  • Appropriate Decision-Making: The use of armed force outside of the territories and Exclusive Economic Zone of Aotearoa New Zealand should be sanctioned by the people of Aotearoa New Zealand and international law. Enlistment in the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) should always be voluntary.
  • Non-Violence: Priority should always be given to conflict prevention and non-violent means of resolving conflict between countries, with armed force only used as a final protective measure.
  • Independence: Aotearoa New Zealand’s defence policy should be independent from the defence policies of states and regions with great military and economic strength.
  • Pacific Cooperation: Aotearoa New Zealand should partner with other Pacific nations to enhance collective security across the region.
  • Recognition: The nature of the work carried out by the armed service personnel, and the sacrifices that they and their families are required to make even in peacetime, must be recognised both during and after their terms of service.

Strategic Priorities

The Green Party commits to action on the following:

“The unprecedented scale and urgency of the ecological crises facing our nation and our planet;

The large and growing scale of local and global inequalities and their role in the ecological crises we face; 

The need for healthy relationships, with the natural world, each other, and ourselves if we are to survive the crises we face.”

Actions in this policy that address these issues include:

  • Ensure that the roles for the NZDF comprise the following:
    • The promotion and protection of peace, justice and the environment throughout the Pacific and the world through our peacekeeping and peacemaking roles;
    • The protection of the territories of Aotearoa New Zealand, including policing of our Economic Exclusion Zone (EEZ) and supporting the security of the territories of our Pacific neighbours;
    • Humanitarian aid, assisting in civil defence emergencies, disaster relief and search and rescue, both within Aotearoa New Zealand and overseas; and
    • Working alongside other Government agencies in maritime border protection work. (1.1)
  • Build a flexible capacity to support communities in likely hotspots of instability and conflict by strengthening the ability of civil defence and other government agencies to assist the NZDF in deploying to climate change-induced significant weather events  (including wildfire and heat waves) and natural hazards. (2.1)
  • Develop a centre for the training of international peacekeepers and share capacity on conflict prevention and peace mediation support work. (2.6)

Connected Policies

This policy is highly connected to the Global Affairs, Climate Change, and Privacy and Security Services Policies. 


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