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Key return to Waitangi possible: Paraone

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 1/11/2016

There's a general feeling that Prime Minister John Key should be welcomed back to Te Tii Marae for Waitangi Day commemorations, but no decision has been made yet, organiser Pita Paraone says.

Mr Paraone says Ngapuhi are still working through some issues after a hui and Mr Key will be notified of the decision as soon as there's confirmation.

"I think there's a feeling that he should be welcomed back to Waitangi but there's just one or two people who have a different view so we've got to work through all that process," he said on Tuesday.

Mr Key did not attend this year after a gathering of Ngapuhi voted to ban him, then said he could visit Te Tii Marae if he didn't talk about the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

If Ngapuhi and Mr Key cannot come to an agreement, Mr Paraone floated the idea of a separate event a day before for Mr Key and other VIPs.

Mr Key said he understood discussions were around whether it was possible for his minimum expectations to be fulfilled.

"Which is just fair and reasonable access and sort of safe environment with equal capacity to speak, nothing different to what we've had in the past," he said.

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