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14-03-29 Joint Press Conference Sydney

14-03-29 Joint Press Conference Sydney

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Published by Political Alert
TRANSCRIPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER
THE HON. TONY ABBOTT MP
JOINT PRESS CONFERENCE WITH THE HON. SCOTT MORRISON MP,
MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND BORDER PROTECTION,
SYDNEY

Subjects: 100 days since the last successful people smuggling operation; Kirribilli House; MH370; Peter Greste.
TRANSCRIPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER
THE HON. TONY ABBOTT MP
JOINT PRESS CONFERENCE WITH THE HON. SCOTT MORRISON MP,
MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND BORDER PROTECTION,
SYDNEY

Subjects: 100 days since the last successful people smuggling operation; Kirribilli House; MH370; Peter Greste.

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Published by: Political Alert on Mar 29, 2014
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03/29/2014

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1 www.pm.gov.au
PRIME MINISTER
29 March 2014
TRANSCRIPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER THE HON. TONY ABBOTT MP
 
JOINT PRESS CONFERENCE WITH THE HON. SCOTT MORRISON MP, MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND BORDER PROTECTION, SYDNEY
 
Subjects: 100 days since the last successful people smuggling operation; Kirribilli House;
 
 MH370; Peter Greste.
E&OE……………………….……………………………………………………………
 
PRIME MINISTER:
Good morning. It’s good to be here with Scott Morrison, the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection
to mark the fact that today is one hundred days without a successful people smuggling venture to Australia. This is the result of the implementation
 – 
 the steady, purposeful and methodical implementation
 – 
 of the  policies that the Coalition took to the last election.
It’s the result of good work by the Minister. It’s the result of outstanding work by all of our border
 protection personnel
 – 
 the Naval and Customs personnel, the immigration personnel, the Australian Federal Police
 – 
 everyone who is making Operation Sovereign Borders work.
Obviously there is a contrast between what’s happened under this Government an
d what we saw under the former government. In the same period 12 months earlier we had some 66 illegal boat arrivals, almost 4,000 illegal arrivals by boat
and obviously there is a very great contrast between what’s happening under this
Government and what happened under its predecessor. But this is a sign of what can be achieved by a Government that knows its own mind, has clear and definite  policies and which steadily, purposefully and methodically implements them.
I’ve always said that I wanted to lead a Government which said what it
 means and does what it says and
that’s exactly what this Government has been.
I do want particularly to congratulate Minister Morrison. He has done an outstanding job. The job is not over, but nevertheless, he has done an outstanding job.
 
 
2 www.pm.gov.au
MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND BORDER PROTECTION:
Well thank you very much, Prime Minister. It is pleasing to be here today with the Prime Minister to mark this significant milestone for Operation Sovereign Borders. This milestone would not have been achieved without the leadership and without the strength and support of
the Prime Minister. That has been a telling factor in the Government’s resolve and making it a top priority
for his Government and for all of those who serve in the Government. This is a good day for those who have been seeking to stop the loss of life at sea. It is a good day for those who wanted to see a time when people who came illegally by boat to Australia were not taking the places of people who were seeking to come the right way through our offshore humanitarian programme. It is a good day for those who want to see the outrageous costs that blew out under the previous government  begin to be taken under control because of the success of these types of policies.
It’s a good day for the
men and women who serve as part of Operation Sovereign Borders and I particularly want to commend Lieutenant General Campbell and his Deputy Commander, Allan McKinnon, and all those who serve in Operation Sovereign Borders across all of the areas that the Prime Minister has noted. These are hardworking dedicated people who believe in the integrity of our borders and the mission that has been set for them. They are the same people who have always been there and it has been a pleasure to be working with them and to give them the opportunity to show this country what they can do when it comes to  protecting our borders.
It’s also a good day, Prime Minister, for all of the Australians who believed that this could be done. There are many who said it couldn’t be d
one, but the Australian people put their faith in this Government, in this Prime Minister, in this set of policies, to be able to stop the boats and to not surrender to the people smugglers as the previous policies had done.
It’s a good day for those Aust
ralians who showed their faith in this Government and it is a pleasure to be able to give this report to them. We now move into the third phase of Operation Sovereign Borders. The first phase was all about setting it up and we had an 80 per cent reduction in arrivals in that approximately first hundred days. In the second hundred days we have now had no successful ventures to Australia and I would say the  principal contributor to that result in particular has been our maritime operations. We now go into the third phase where we move into the post monsoon period and the risks are just as great and our response will be as follows: we will maintain the intensity of all of our operations in all areas of Operation Sovereign Borders, both with our offshore processing,
with what we’re doing at sea and through
our disruption and partnership operations all the way up through the region, all the way back to source,
we’ll
maintain the intensity. Anyone who seeks to come here or run a venture in the next hundred days will find the same set of policies that stopped all those coming over the last hundred days. We will continue to engage with the region
 – 
 
I’ll be back up in Papua New Guinea this week and in the
region over the next few weeks continuing to pursue our regional partnerships and arrangements.
 
 
3 www.pm.gov.au
Thirdly, it is important that we have to address the legacy. There are 30,000 people who remain onshore as a
result of the previous government’s failings. There’s around about 2,500 sitting jointly between the Manus
 and Nauru centres and we need to work through the processing and settlement arrangements there and the return of those who are found not to be refugees.
Finally, there’s an election in Western Australia next Saturday for the Senate and the Australian pe
ople and  particularly those in Western Australia should know that the Labor Party continue to oppose the policies that
are working. In particular, they oppose our maritime operations and the policy of turn backs where it’s safe
to do so. They continue to oppose the reintroduction of temporary protection visas. Despite the success the Labor Party and The Greens still oppose the policies that have delivered this result which we are pleased to report on today.
QUESTION:
Are you prepared to say “mission accomplished”?
 
PRIME MINISTER:
 No, because as Scott said, the monsoon is coming to an end and traditionally, people smuggling operations
have picked up at the end of the monsoon. In addition, we don’t simply have to stop the boats but we’ve got
to deal w
ith the consequences of the former government’s failure and the consequences of the former government’s failure are not only the 30,000 people who are in Australia who came illegally by boat, but there’s some hundreds in Nauru and about 1,300 in Manus, so
that all has to be dealt with. So, it is too early to declare that the job is done, but nevertheless I think we can safely say that the way is closed. We can safely say that the way is closed. We can say to all of the people who scoffed, we can say to
all of the people who said it couldn’t be done, that the boats couldn’t be stopped, that it was just a simple
slogan that could never be implemented - that it can be done and it is being done.
QUESTION:
But just because there are no successful ventures to Australia doesn’t necessarily mean the boats are
stopping coming all together though, does it?
PRIME MINISTER:
Well, that’s exactly right. The monsoon is ending and typically there has been an u
 psurge in people smuggling ventures once the monsoon has ended, but we have gone 100 days without any successful people smuggling ventures arriving in Australia and in the same period last year
 – 
 in the same period 12 months ago
 – 
 we had 66 illegal boat arrivals and we had almost 4,000 people illegally arriving by boat. So, this is a dramatic transformation under the policies of this Government.
QUESTION:
In that hundred days how many boats have been turned around?
PRIME MINISTER:
I’m not going to comme
nt on operations on the water, just say that we have implemented every aspect of the  policies that we put to the people at the election and obviously one of the policies that we did take to the
election was turning boats around where it’s safe to do so.
 

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