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Crikey Says

Jan 7, 2014

Crikey says: our department for overseas stays

If Colin Russell gets a bill from the government, why not Schapelle Corby? The politics of consular assistance. At the eleventh hour, Scott Morrison asked not to deport gay man to Pakistan. The year in elections: William Bowe previews Griffith and the state polls. King hit or coward's punch? The language of violence examined. At home with the Cheneys in America. And the sugar debate turns sour.


Australian journalist Alan Morison could be jailed in Thailand on spurious criminal defamation charges. Should the Australian government make a stand and offer help? Morison certainly believes so, as he argues in Crikey today.

Australian scientists and tourists were left stranded when their ship was stuck in ice in Antarctica. Should they have expected the Australian government to help free them?

Greenpeace activist Colin Russell was jailed in Russia for his protest against oil drilling. Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has suggested he pay back the $35,000 spent by the Australian government to help free him. Should he have to pick up the bill?

Where does the responsibility of our government begin and end? What expectations are reasonable — and at what cost? As one academic told Crikey today:

“The department’s being eaten alive by consular. It will be the Department For Australians Travelling.”

Dr James Cotton reckons we’ve got a “cultural expectation” of help. We might be facing a culture shock.


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2 thoughts on “Crikey says: our department for overseas stays

  1. Rena Zurawel

    Australian stranded overseas in unespected circumstances should expect consular help.
    It is the obligation of the Australian government to look after AUstralian citizens when in trouble.
    However, the services provided by the Australian consulates all over the world should not be abused.

  2. Rena Zurawel

    Dr. James Cotton’s statement is a bit arrogant.
    It is the LAW we should respect. ANd our laws are based on our culture.
    ‘Cultural expectation’ is a bit vague.
    It is not Australian culture to breach the LAW of other countries; or is it?


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