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Dutton says Labor has no border plan

AAP logoAAP 24/08/2016

Immigration Minister Peter Dutton says Bill Shorten's failure to say whether a Labor government would send asylum seekers to New Zealand shows he still doesn't have a coherent plan for border protection.

Mr Dutton said the opposition leader obfuscated and totally failed to address this important issue when questioned at the National Press Club on Wednesday.

He said the legacy from Labor's last time in government, 30,000 illegal boat arrivals, would take this and future governments years to sort out.

"Mr Shorten either doesn't understand the importance of policies which deter vulnerable people undertaking dangerous journeys on people smuggling boats or he is recklessly playing politics with people's lives," he said in a statement.

Mr Shorten said he didn't believe it was as difficult as the government suggested to find third-party nations to accept refugees.

He hinted that one could be New Zealand.

"If there are resettlement nations who are willing to conclude reasonable settlements with us, I believe we should pursue that," he said.

Mr Dutton said Mr Shorten spent every day before the election saying Labor had a border protection plan which was the same as the coalition.

"Yet, he has confirmed every day since the election that Labor has no plan," he said.

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