Originally Posted by claude glass View Post

The place is dangerous and poor, and Mogmac makes some sound points. which I agree with. But if this plan is accompanied by adequate funding it is actually a great idea. If this does deter people smuggling, it's harder to criticise it and funding needs will be lower. We can't avoid the fact that people smuggling is problematic because people keep drowning. It's entirely probable that people paying the smugglers don't fully know the risks. Evidence is already there that this will kill the smuggling industry, so that's some kind of win.

i really dont see how you can measure the greatness of an asylum seeker program by the degree to which it deters people smugglers. its not a criminal justice program, its a humanitarian program.

Also, this would only break a tiny part of the people smuggling chain. people will continue to flee and be trafficked through southeat asia, in places that arent monitored. sure, they might pop off the radar, it doesnt mean they have magically dissappered to happier pastures they never would have know about had it not been for those pesky people smugglers; they will continue to drown, suffer and die, but elsewhere.

the issue of most importance here is that asylum seekers and refugees will now unnecessarily be denied the ability enjoy basic rights. adequate funding wont address this as its hard to fathom how much funding would be needed to bring PNG's infrastructure up to acceptable levels, given what they would have enjoyed had we taken them in (like we are entirely capable of doing). education and health systems in developing countries (i dont know specifically about PNG, but its PNG so..) require more than just money to address. plus, all refugees will be uniquely disadvantaged and marginalised in PNG because they dont speak the language, many not even english, but also because they are undesirable outsiders who, if the situation for asylum seekers in other countries is to go by, wont even be able to rely on police not to abuse or exploit them. funding wont address these problems any time soon, not in an impoverished country that lacks institutional capacity like PNG.

The people who purposefully exploit them and unnecessarily put them in harms way, are horrible and should be undermined/ prosecuted/ whatever, but I dont see the logic in using the well-being of asylum seekers as the cost for undermining people who harm them.

edit: I do agree with the last part of what you say, however. Its a big challenge.

Last edited by mogmac: 20-Jul-13 at 08:44pm