Airport checks ‘not discriminatory’

Main Stories, National

The National, Thursday February 6th, 2014

 AUSTRALIA will work towards doing away with harsh treatment of Papua New Guineans by Australian immigration officers at its airports, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop says.

She said this yesterday when asked to comment on ongoing complaints by Papua New Guineans about the way they had been treated at Australian airports.

“I’ve been informed that there are complaints, and if there are any specific instances of unfair treatment, please bring them to the attention of the Australian government because we would not condone that,” Bishop told reporters.

“If there are instances that should be investigated, we’ll investigate that.

“But I can assure you we have very professional customs officials, we have department of agriculture officials in place to maintain the integrity of our borders.

“That’s through bio-security measures, through appropriate screening.

“It’s not discriminatory, it happens to all incoming passengers.

“You want to come with me sometime and through an Australian airport and see who gets targeted for the explosives testing?

“I don’t think I’ve ever been through the Australian airports without being subjected to it.

“It certainly is in no way aimed at any particular people or nation.

“But if there are instances, we will certainly investigate them.”