It has been reported today that the Government of Fiji has issued a stinging response to Kevin Rudd's solution to the problem of illegal boat arrivals into Australia. This "solution" is to send everyone who arrives he illegally by boat to PNG for processing and settlement. This includes unaccompanied children, minors and families.
The main thrust of Fiji's opposition to this idea is that it would irrevocably change the culture, stability and ethnic mix of the area. There is also the issue of the religious beliefs of most of the asylum seekers: they are predominately Muslim and PNG and the Pacific Islands are Christian states. The Christian belief is actually mentioned in the constitution document of PNG.
The Fiji response, in as many words, calls this policy an irresponsible knee jerk reaction to an Australian problem caused by the Australian Labor Government.
Once again I, and many Australians, are asking for the details of this agreement with PNG.
THE COST? HOW MANY? HOW LONG? WHERE IN PNG (Manus will only hold 600 after work is finished in mid 2014)?