The counter-terrorism exercise between New Zealand Special Operations Forces and United States forces, which was suspended on Thursday following the death of a member of the NZSAS resumed today.
CAPTION: Lance Corporal Nicholas Kahotea, 1st New Zealand Special Air Service Regiment, killed in training, 8 May 2019.
The exercise will be suspended again tomorrow (Tuesday), when the private funeral of Lance Corporal Kahotea will take place.
As a result of the incident last Wednesday in which Lance Corporal Nicholas Kahotea died, the scope of the exercise has been reduced, with some of the more complex training modified.
Chief of Army Major General John Boswell said safety was always of paramount concern.
“While we continue to look into the cause of the accident, I am satisfied that the measures put in place will allow us to continue with the remainder of this exercise safely,” Major General Boswell said.
The resumed activities taking place between now and the end of May include training with United States ground and air units in locations around New Zealand’s North Island.
Air activities will include aerial gunnery at Kaipara Air Weapons Range and combined mission planning.
A police investigation into Lance Corporal Kahotea’s death on behalf of the Coroner is taking place and the New Zealand Defence Force is also holding a Court of Inquiry to establish the facts of the accident.
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