6 May 2004

Australia offers administrative help to Vanuatu

9:11 am on 6 May 2004

Australia says it will step up the help it gives Vanuatu to secure its borders.

The Australian Justice Minister, Chris Ellison, says he's offered extra legal and administrative help during a meeting with Vanuatu's Prime Minister, Edward Natapei, the Australian Associated Press reports.

The assistance will help Vanuatu meet its commitment to the Pacific Islands Forum's Nasonini Declaration, which requires Pacific island countries to comply with conventions on international counterterrorism, terrorist financing, money laundering and people smuggling.

Senator Ellison says it's important for all countries in the region to have a sound legal regime that'll help law enforcers to catch terrorists who travel to, or route funds through, the area.

Australia has already developed a regional framework and model counter-terrorism legislation for other countries to adapt to suit their own circumstances.