THE first US warship to visit New Zealand in 33 years will arrive next month for the NZ Navy's 75th birthday celebrations.
Prime Minister John Key said he had granted approval for the USS Sampson to visit.
Under NZ's anti-nuclear law, the PM has to be satisfied any visiting ship is not nuclear armed or powered.
The visit represents a departure from the US policy not to send any navy ships to NZ as part of the reprisals for the anti-nuclear policy, which effectively suspended NZ from the Anzus security alliance in 1985.
- NZ HERALD