The conservative government of Australia on Wednesday announced that it would reject a UN migration pact previously condemned by the US and several European countries.
In a joint statement with his home and foreign ministers, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, “Adopting the pact ‘would risk encouraging illegal entry to Australia and reverse… hard-won successes in combating the people-smuggling trade’.”
Australian PM was the creator of the hard-hitting policy of detaining asylum-seekers aiming to reach the country by ship on isolated Pacific islands.
The ministers said, “We believe that the compact is inconsistent with our well-established policies and not in Australia’s interest.”
After 18 months of negotiations, the UN Global Compact for Migration was agreed in July and is due to is adopted next month.
Previously, the pact has been rejected by President Donald Trump’s administration and the conservative governments in Austria, the Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary.
Morrison earlier this week announced that he would seek to cut legal migration into Australia, i.e. from the present official cap of 190,000 per year to about 160,000.