New Zealand may become a republic but not anytime soon, Ardern says

New Zealand may become a republic but not anytime soon, Ardern says

FILE PHOTO – New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addresses the Lowy Institute in Sydney, Australia, July 7, 2022. Dean Lewins/Pool via REUTERS

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SYDNEY, Sept 13 (Reuters) – New Zealand will not actively take any measures to become a republic in the short-term after the death of Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, though she expects the Pacific nation will eventually become one. I have never felt the urgency. There are so many challenges that we face. This is a huge, important debate. When asked by reporters Monday if the British monarch’s change would spark talk of republicanism in the country, Ardern said that he didn’t believe it would.

New Zealand is one of 15 realms to count the British Monarch as head of state including Australia and Canada, although the role is largely ceremonial. There has been some debate about whether the Pacific nation should be made a republic with a citizen as its head of state.

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“I do believe that is where New Zealand will head in time. Ardern stated that while I believe it will happen in my lifetime, I don’t think it is a short-term or any other thing that is on the agenda anytime soon.

New Zealand will mark the passing of Queen Elizabeth with a state memorial service and a one-off public holiday on Sept. 26, Ardern said. Ardern, who will be representing New Zealand alongside the Governor General at the Queen’s funeral will depart for London on Wednesday.

The Queen’s passing has also reignited debates over the future of the monarchy across the Tasman Sea in Australia. Anthony Albanese, Prime Minister, has previously supported a republic and said that his Labor government would not seek to hold a referendum during its first term. read more

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Reporting by Renju Jose and Lewis Jackson;
Editing by Chris Reese

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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