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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
04WELLINGTON771
2004-09-09 22:55:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Wellington
Cable title:  

NEW ZEALAND COUNTRY CLEARANCE FOR NOAA OFFICIALS

Tags:   OTRA  TPHY  KSCA  SENV  NZ 
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						UNCLAS WELLINGTON 000771 

SIPDIS

COMMERCE FOR NOAA/OAR/JNBRUCE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OTRA TPHY KSCA SENV NZ
SUBJECT: NEW ZEALAND COUNTRY CLEARANCE FOR NOAA OFFICIALS
EMBLEY, WALKER, AND BAKER, SEPTEMBER 18 - OCTOBER 22, 2004

REF: USDOC 4240



1. Embassy welcomes and grants country clearance to DOC
NOAA Scientists Robert W. Embley, Sharon L. Walker, and
Edward T. Baker to travel to Auckland and Wellington, New
Zealand from September 18 - October 22, 2004. The purpose
of this visit is to participate in the research cruise
aboard the New Zealand R/V Tangaroa to inventory active
hydrothermal sites along the Kermadec Arc.



2. Embassy understands no assistance is required.



3. Embassy point of contact is Political/Economic OMS
Bridget Walsh. Contact details are as follows:
Office: 644-462-6033
Fax: 644-472-3537
Cell: 027-451-2540
E-mail: walshba@state.gov



4. All official visitors to the Embassy are required to
report to the Regional Security Office for a TDY security
briefing.



5. Visitors should use local taxi service, which is
generally safe, reliable and frequent. Taxi fare from the
airport to downtown Auckland hotels is approximately NZD60.
In Wellington the fare is approximately NZD30.



6. Travelers can exchange currency at the airport upon
arrival and ATM machines are readily available throughout
New Zealand.



7. Biosecurity Fines:

The government of New Zealand instituted fines for non-
declared biosecurity hazards on travelers entering New
Zealand with undeclared plant, animal or food material.
Travelers found carrying these undeclared items will be
immediately fined NZ$200 (US $150). Biosecurity is a
serious issue in New Zealand and fines will be administered
immediately and without warnings.



8. Security Assessment:

a. There are no local terrorist groups or support groups
believed to be operating in New Zealand at this time. In
light of the worldwide security alert all visitors should
heighten their security awareness and report any unusual
incidents to the regional security office.

b. Anonymous telephonic threats and obscure threat mail
have occasionally targeted U.S. diplomatic missions in New
Zealand. In response to U.S. policies and actions, various
groups in New Zealand have demonstrated occasionally at the
embassy in Wellington and at the consulate in Auckland.
These demonstrations were of a small scale and were
peacefully conducted. During these demonstrations, the host
country police and protective services provided adequate
protection to the embassy and consulate.

c. While New Zealand is considered a low threat crime
environment, Wellington and Auckland have experienced an
increase in violent and petty crimes. Home invasion
robberies and assaults, once very rare, are becoming more
frequent. Burglaries and thefts occur countrywide.
Visitors should be aware that street crime is a daily
occurrence in the larger cities, including Wellington and
Auckland. Common sense precautions should be taken,
especially at night, to avoid becoming a target of
opportunity.

d. All forms of public transportation are generally safe at
all times of the day.

Swindells