Prime Minister Tony Abbott when he was in Mackay earlier this week.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott when he was in Mackay earlier this week. Peter Holt

Abbott says 'Nope, nope, nope' to persecuted refugees

PRIME Minster Tony Abbott has rejected the prospect of Australia offering any help to thousands of displaced refugees fleeing persecution in south-east Asia.

Thousands Rohingya from Myanmar and Bangladeshi are at the centre of an international outcry after Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand pushed the boats they were on out to sea.

Indonesia and Malaysia have since accepted some of the refugees, on the condition the global community finds ways to repatriate them within a year.

But Mr Abbott on Thursday said "Nope, nope, nope" to the prospect of Australia helping.

He said if people wanted to come to Australia they had to come "through the front door".

He said the government would not do anything that could encourage more people to "get on boats".

It is believed there are still about 7000 refugees stranded on boats at sea.



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