National MP Simon O'Connor has lodged a proposal for Parliament to invite the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, to speak to Parliament.
O'Connor lodged a motion as the MP for Tamaki this week and told the NZ Herald he was hoping it would prompt party leaders to discuss extending the invitation.
However, Leader of the House Chris Hipkins said it would be "undiplomatic" to issue an invitation without first checking with Zelenskyy whether it would be welcome.
"He's a busy guy. I think we have to acknowledge there is a lot happening for him at the moment and we wouldn't want to issue an invitation which he felt he either had to do or that he turned down."
Zelenskyy has spoken virtually to parliaments in many countries – including Australia, Canada, the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Israel, Germany, Italy, and Japan. He has used the speeches to call for the support he needs in the invasion.
Speaker Trevor Mallard said such an invitation would be possible but under Parliament's rules any proposal for a foreign leader to speak in Parliament had to come from the Prime Minister.
It would be then be discussed by the Business Committee – a group of MPs from all parties that decides on the business of Parliament. It was likely such a proposal would at least require broad support – including of both National and Labour.
The recent moves to allow a virtual Parliament would make it easier, because the foreign leader could speak virtually as Zelenskyy has done with other countries.
O'Connor said he had done so in response to conversations with Ukrainians in his electorate about the invasion by Russia and efforts by the international community to help.
It comes after attempts by Parliament's foreign affairs select committee tries to get Russia's Ambassador, Georgii Zuev, to speak to the committee about the invasion.
Zuev has turned down the invitations, saying it would be "futile". The committee was considering using its powers to compel a witness to appear - an extraordinary step - although Zuev has diplomatic immunity.
The Ukrainian and European Union head diplomats have addressed the committee.
The Prime Minister has repeatedly said that expelling Russia's diplomats remains an option, but would also mean New Zealand was left without consular presence in Russia given it would retaliate in kind.
Thus far, New Zealand's total contribution to Ukraine totals $30 million in humanitarian, military and legal aid, as well as the deployment of a total of 67 people to Europe in varying roles. Russia has retaliated with sanctions on New Zealand, including travel bans on the PM and all MPs as well as defence and intelligence and security staff.
This morning a RNZAF C-130 Hercules left for Europe with 50 Defence Force personnel to help transport and distribute donated military aid to Ukraine. Air Marshal Kevin Short, the Chief of Defence Force, said it was the largest deployment to Europe since about 250 personnel were sent to Bosnia in the 1990s.
On Monday the PM also announced an extra $13.1 million for military, legal and human rights support. That funding included $7.5m to contribute to weapons and ammunition procurement by the United Kingdom.
Short said funding weapons purchases through the UK was far more effective than sending New Zealand's small stock of Javelin missiles, which would equate to "five minutes" on the battlefield compared to this support of about three months.
An eight-person logistic specialists team was also being sent to support the international donor coordination centre in Germany.
So far New Zealand had focused its efforts in condemning Russia's actions through economic sanctions and sanctions on travel and assets of those associated with the Putin regime.
It has also donated humanitarian support to Ukraine as well and non-lethal aid to the military, including intelligence and protective equipment.