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Tipsheet

New Zealand Declares 'Proud Boys' a Terrorist Organization

John Minchillo/AP Photo

New Zealand has declared the far-right Proud Boys a terrorist organization, classifying the group in the same category as the Islamic State and the Irish Republican Army. 

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Following in Canada's footsteps, New Zealand has made it illegal for its citizens to fund, recruit or participate within the group, making authorities obligated to take action against anyone who does. 

According to a government filing, "[The group's] extreme right-wing ideology is founded on racist and fascist principles. APB engaged in the attack on the [U.S. Capitol] Building for the purpose of obstructing and preventing the proper functioning of democratic government and in opposition to what PB perceives as liberalisation and diversification of US society." 

Although the Proud Boys is not known to be active outside of the U.S., the New Zealand government said that its involvement in the January 6 Capitol protests sparked its hasty decision. 

New Zealand's government claims that the group was responsible for inciting crowds, coordinating attacks on law enforcement and led other protestors to areas where they could break into the Capitol, despite failing to enumerate facts to back up its designation.  

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The filing also argued that the group has a "history" of using street rallies and social media to intimidate opponents and recruit young men through demonstrations of violence, claiming that the Proud Boys is an "extremist" group that uses various smoke screens to hide its true aims. 

The former leader of the Proud Boys Henry "Enrique" Tarrio and four others were charged with seditious conspiracy for what federal prosecutors say was a "coordinated attack on the Capitol," yet the United States government — including Biden's Department of Justice — have not taken similar action. 

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