Corin Dann interviews US Secretary of Defence Leon Panetta for Q+A

This Sunday Q +A will screen an exclusive in-depth interview with US Secretary of Defence Leon Panetta.

It is the first time in 30 years that a US Secretary of Defence has been in New Zealand, following the breakdown of the ANZUS treaty over New Zealand’s anti-nuclear policy.

TVNZ Political Editor Corin Dann will interview Secretary Panetta, who will meet both New Zealand Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman and Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully during his time in the country. The visit follows the signing of the Washington Declaration in June between Panetta and Coleman, which aims to strengthen and expand the bilateral defence relationship.

Panetta arrives in New Zealand after visits to Japan, where an agreement was made to install a second missile defence system in the south of the country, and China, where the aim of the visit was to ease suspicions on both sides as the US implements a new strategy that shifts much of its military focus to the Pacific. In a military academy in Beijing, Panetta stated, “Our rebalance to the Asia-Pacific region is not an attempt to contain China. It is an attempt to engage China and expand its role in the Pacific.”

So what does this rebalance mean for New Zealand? Q +A, Sunday, September 23rd at 9am on ONE.

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