By NAOMI WOODLEY and GEORGE ROBERTS
“We’re trying to stop people thinking that it’s OK to come into Indonesia and use that as a waiting ground to get to Australia,” he told the ABC’s AM program this morning.
Mr Morrison refused to say whether Indonesian president Joko Widodo had been informed of the latest policy, adding only that the Indonesian government was informed.
He said Indonesia, as a transit country, was used by smugglers.
“We’ve had great success in stopping people coming to Australia by boat and for most of that time over the past year, that has seen a significant reduction of people moving into Indonesia,” he said. “In recent months, we’ve seen a change to that and that’s because people think they can transit and sit in Indonesia and use that as a place to gain access to Australia. This is designed to stop people flowing into Indonesia and to support Indonesia and for them not to become a destination country.”
He said Australia’s humanitarian resettlement program would remain at 13,750 per year, with 11,000 resettled from overseas.
When asked if the new approach would apply to other transit countries, including Malaysia, Mr Morrison said it would not.