30 Mar 2011

Rudd calls for regional pact on asylum-seekers

9:46 pm on 30 March 2011

Australian foreign minister Kevin Rudd has urged a Bali meeting on people-smuggling to adopt a regional agreement on asylum-seekers.

The meeting involves more than 50 countries - including New Zealand - as well as international agencies such as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

New Zealand's Immigration Minister, Jonathan Coleman, who is also at the conference, says these are serious issues throughout the region and the Bali Process is about working together effectively to address dangerous and undesirable activities.

He says New Zealand's geographical isolation mitigates its exposure to smuggling and trafficking, but as a regional partner, the Government is determined to support ways to deter criminal acts.