The 2007 "anti-terror" raids in the Urewera have been slammed as a breach of the Treaty of Waitangi amid calls for a royal commission of inquiry into the arrests.
Waiariki MP Te Ururoa Flavell described the raids and mistreatment of the people of Ruatoki as a breach of the Treaty and is exploring with Tuhoe the possibility of lodging a claim with the Waitangi Tribunal.
The Maori Party is also calling for a royal commission of inquiry into the raids of October 2007 and subsequent prosecutions, saying decisive action was required to start a process of recovery and healing.
"A great injustice has been done to the people of Tuhoe. They have been labelled terrorists; their children traumatised by the aiming of firearms at school buses and the raiding of houses; their whanau burdened by these charges for the last four years," Mr Flavell said.
"These people have been stigmatised. The Crown owes Tuhoe an apology."
In response to Prime Minister John Key's refusal to issue an apology, Mr Flavell said he thought it was clear that it was not the people of Tuhoe who were the terrorists.
"The application of the law needs to be scrutinised. Enormous damage has been done to the police's credibility and their relationship with Ngai Tuhoe, and the hurt cannot be allowed to fester any longer."
Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples said an open process of disclosure, inquiry and public accountability was urgently needed.
Maori media consultant Tawini Rangihau said the Government owed Tuhoe "one big old apology".
She said police, in order to restore their credibility, should be developing more positive relationships with Tuhoe.
A leading Tuhoe spokesman, Professor Pou Temara, said it was too early to be calling for an apology. He said until the charges faced by Tame Iti and four others had been dealt with, an apology was "a bit presumptuous".
"It is not the time to call for an apology. When the issue with Tame is dealt with and there is a clearer picture, then we will be able to formulate an approach," he said.
Police Commissioner Peter Marshall acknowledged the raids, known by police as Operation Eight, had had a number of unintended consequences on the relationship between Tuhoe and police.
As a result of crucial evidence being ruled inadmissible, the Crown no longer believed there was sufficient evidence to justify the Arms Act charges against 13 of the 17 accused. The remaining four, Tame Iti, Emily Bailey, Te Rangikaiwhiria Kemara and Urs Signer, will face trial next February on charges of participating in a criminal group and possessing firearms.
Tuhoe Francis Lambert, one of the original "Urewera 18", died earlier this year. He would have faced trial with Iti in February. Iti claimed the charges were partly responsible for his death.