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Is the UK Prime Minister just emulating Australia’s inhumane refugee policies?

“We hear a lot from politicians about how Britain should emulate Australia’s immigration policy. This is usually taken to refer to their points system for highly skilled migrants (which the UK has in fact had since 2008).

"However, a direct comparison can also be made to what the Prime Minister is proposing. Australia is one of the countries taking the most refugees through the UN resettlement programme. But this is coupled with their campaign to ‘Turn Back the Boats’: a military operation dragging boats of desperate people back into the ocean, contravening international law. It also involves deporting people attempting to seek refuge in Australia to extra-territorial detention centres on Nauru, where the Australian government have been accused by the UN of torture.

"Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott headed off public concern about drowned bodies washing up in Australia by his combination of Turn Back The Boats and an argument that people seeking refuge this way were ‘queue-jumpers’ who should wait in line in UN camps, resulting in an out-of-sight, out-of-mind solution where people are held indefinitely in horrific conditions. This approach has close parallels with the Prime Minister’s proposals.”

You can read more on Dr Jones' blog 

For further details please contact Nicola Jones, Communications Manager, University of Warwick 07824 540863 or