5 November 2003

Rush to pass exclusion rules as boat people arrive

The Federal Government last night passed emergency regulations to prevent a boatload of apparent asylum seekers from applying for protection after they arrived at Melville Island, near Darwin, yesterday.

The regulations seek to excise nearly 4000 islands from Australia's migration zone, denying anyone landing there from seeking asylum under Australian law.

Labor immediately vowed to use its numbers in the Senate to disallow the regulations. Such a move, if supported by the minor parties and one independent, would disrupt the Government's attempts to prevent the boatload of 14 people, said to be from Turkey, from applying for asylum.

I guess we must be headed for an election. the regulations will be disallowed in the Senate and the government will spend weeks leaping up and down and proclaiming the evils of the ALP. The government's own record on dealing with French al-Qa'ida members visiting Australia will not be up for discussion.

Seriously, how do you defend the national territory by giving it away?

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