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Articles on People smuggling

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Julie Bishop: ‘The best way for Indonesia to resolve any concerns it has about Operation Sovereign Borders is for Indonesia to enforce sovereignty over its borders’. AAP/Paul Miller

Catch him if you can: Abbott digs in against questions at home and abroad

The government has admitted that it will do whatever it takes to keep the boats stopped and, it seems, if that takes slapping the Indonesians around a bit, it doesn’t seem too concerned. As senior Indonesian…
Tony Abbott highlighted the importance of Indonesia knowing that the Australian government is ‘absolutely resolute’ on stopping the boats. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Abbott gives no ground to Indonesia in bribe allegation row

The government goes into the parliamentary session’s final fortnight on the back foot over two highly contentious issues: its citizenship legislation and Indonesia’s demand to know whether Australia paid…
A crew of people smugglers have alleged that an Australian official paid them to return a boatload of asylum seekers to Indonesia. AAP/Customs

Is it an offence if Australians pay people smugglers to turn back?

If Australian officials did pay off people smugglers, has the government effectively joined the people smuggling trade? Has it broken any laws?
These Rohingya women and children, rescued by fishermen in Aceh, are among thousands in need of resettlement. EPA

Australia can do better on Asian boat crisis than ‘nope, nope, nope’

A summit in Bangkok is discussing the fate of thousands of people who were stranded at sea. Australia is represented but refuses to resettle any refugees, casting doubt on its commitment to a regional solution.
Rohingya refugees from Myanmar travelled in this fishing boat to Sumatra, Indonesia, with officials announcing some 2000 people were rounded up or rescued after arriving in Malaysia and Indonesia over the weekend. EPA

Pushed offshore, the ‘boat people’ crisis demands regional response

Australia may have ‘stopped the boats’ but the tragedy of people drowning at sea continues to our north and is getting worse. A regional solution to the refugee crisis is urgently needed.
The ABC’s Four Corners program investigated the people smugglers allegedly behind this asylum seeker boat, which sank off the coast of Java in September this year. AAP

Four Corners: human smuggling and the spectacle of suffering

Last night, the ABC’s Four Corners program fed us with yet another 50 minutes worth of emotional, heartbreaking and harrowing testimonies of traumatised survivors of yet another human smuggling tragedy…
Indonesian military officers have been caught up in people smuggling rings, but what actually happens to the kingpins of these operations? AAP/Karlis Salna

Prosecuting people smugglers in Indonesia

Against widely held opinion in Australia that Indonesia is not doing anything to stop people smugglers from shipping asylum seekers to Australia, Indonesia has, in fact, stepped up its activities to curb…
Opposition leader Tony Abbott and immigration spokesman Scott Morrison hope Australian voters prefer their policy. AAP/Dan Peled

Tough guys: Operation Sovereign Borders vs the PNG Solution

Just when you thought being “tough on borders” couldn’t get any more serious, along comes the Coalition’s Operation Sovereign Borders. It’s got all the right elements of a plan: it’s an operation (with…
Do people smugglers actually have a business model that can be broken? EPA/Made Nagi

The myth of the people smugglers’ ‘business model’

The people smugglers business model is phrase that has entered the Australian political lexicon if only through sheer repetition. It has barely left the lips of prime minister Kevin Rudd or immigration…
Will Kevin Rudd’s PNG plan be the ‘silver bullet’ to end the people smuggling trade, allegedly practised by the likes of Afghan national Sayed Abbas? AAP/Karlis Salna

How will people smugglers react to the new Rudd asylum plan?

The empirical test of the Australian government’s refugee resettlement agreement with Papua New Guinea will be whether there is a decline in the numbers of small fishing boats overloaded with desperate…
Kevin Rudd’s agreement with PNG on asylum seekers binds Australia to Peter O'Neill’s government, rather than being a true regional solution. AAP/Dan Peled

Rudd’s PNG deal is a co-dependency, not a ‘regional solution’

The precise details of the refugee resettlement deal struck between Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd and his Papua New Guinean counterpart Peter O'Neill are yet to be revealed. But what we do know…
Australian PM Kevin Rudd and Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono will meet today to discuss the asylum seeker issue - what is the view from Indonesia? EPA/Bagus Indahono

View from Indonesia: how can Australia deal with asylum seekers?

Today’s Indonesia-Australia Leaders’ Meeting - where Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd will meet with Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono - takes place against a backdrop of the asylum seeker…

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