Australian News: Politicians return to Canberra ahead of parliament return; Farmers back calls to keep Indonesia border open amid foot-and-mouth outbreak

Back to something this morning, and Opposition Leader Peter Dutton has appeared on Sydney’s 2GB radio station to clarify his position on Australia’s border with Indonesia.

As reported this morning, the opposition has been criticizing the Albanian government for its preparedness regarding the foot-and-mouth disease outbreak in Indonesia.

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton. Credits: Alex Ellinghausen

Here’s what Dutton told presenter Ben Fordham:

The Prime Minister really needs to explain why the borders should not be closed. Because the briefing I had, I have to say, was pretty shaky. We heard about 65 million cattle and goats in Indonesia. There are vaccines for about 3 million. It is spread over 22 provinces.

And if we have a single case here… it closes the entire export industry of our industry. That’s an $80 billion impact on our economy.

My argument is that the Prime Minister should stand up and argue why the borders should not be closed. This is my position.

Fordham later asked whether people should now refer to the Opposition Leader as “Dutton in every sense” as he did not appear to be taking a clear position on the border closure.

Here is Dutton’s response:

I think the borders should be closed [if that’s the advice] the government has

So I’m at a disadvantage. I don’t have all the information [Albanese has]. So the government has been elected. They are the ones who have to make the call.

I believe [at the moment] we should close the border. But I think the Prime Minister needs to explain why that hasn’t happened. So far he hasn’t.

Nine, the owner of 2GB, also owns this header.

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