New Zealand prime minister’s emotional message to family of Grace Millane

New Zealand's prime minister Jacinda Ardern gave an emotional apology to the family of British backpacker Grace Millane, saying: "Your daughter should have been safe here, and she wasn't, and I'm sorry for that."

Ms Millane, 22, went missing from a hostel in Auckland on December 1 and a body was found in the Waitakere Ranges on Sunday.

A 26-year-old man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has been charged with murder and appeared in an Auckland court on Monday.

Speaking to reporters about the death, Ms Ardern said: "I cannot imagine the grief of her family and what they would be experiencing and feeling right now.

"My thoughts and prayers are with her father David, who is in the country, her mother Gillian, who cannot be here, and her wider family, friends and loved ones.

"From the Kiwis I have spoken to, there is this overwhelming sense of hurt and shame that this has happened in our country, a place that prides itself on our hospitality, on our manaakitanga (a Maori term meaning kindness and generosity) especially to those who are visiting our shores."

Appearing to become choked with emotion, the PM added: "So on behalf of New Zealand, I want to apologise to Grace's family.

"Your daughter should have been safe here, and she wasn't, and I'm sorry for that."

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