Mon, Sep 30, 2013 - Page 5 News List

Australia defends boat response

BLOOD ON ITS HANDS?Surviving asylum seekers said they repeatedly called on Australian authorities for assistance, yet the rescue that was pledged never came.


Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa warned his Australian counterpart Julie Bishop that Indonesia “cannot accept any Australian policy that would, in nature, violate [our] sovereignty.”

Human Rights Watch (HRW) urged Abbott to abandon his towback plan.

“If Australia really wants to address the problem, then it should help Indonesia develop its capacity to assess asylum claims and process refugees,” HRW Australia director Elaine Pearson said.

“That’s a better policy than schemes such as paying bounties and buying boats to deter sea travel,” she added.

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