Tough laws to stop ‘country hopping’

SYDNEY – Australian Immigration Minister Peter Dutton says tough new immigration laws are designed to stop refugees from country hopping after being released from offshore detention camps.

On Sunday, the Turnbull government announced it would permanently ban asylum seekers who attempt to reach Australia by boat from ever entering the country, even if they are genuine refugees and seek to come as tourists or on business decades later.

Legislation will be introduced to Parliament in November, applying to all adults detained on Manus and Nauru and backdated to July 2013.

Mr Dutton said refugee and asylum-seeker advocates should stop advising detainees to refuse to move to third countries because the government would eventually cave in and bring them to Australia.

“What we don’t want is if someone is to go to a third country, that they apply for a tourist visa or some other way to circumvent what the government’s policy intent is by coming back to Australia from that third country,” Mr Dutton told ABC radio.

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