THE HON TANYA PLIBERSEK MP
DEPUTY LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION
SHADOW MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS
AND INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT
MEMBER FOR SYDNEY
NATIONAL NINE NEWS
WEDNESDAY, 29 APRIL 2015
SUBJECT/S: Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran
AMELIA ADAMS, PRESENTER: I'm joined now by Opposition Foreign Affairs spokesperson Tanya Plibersek. Ms Plibersek, good afternoon, thank you for joining us. Firstly, obviously this is not the outcome either side of government wanted.
TANYA PLIBERSEK, DEPUTY LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION: Certainly this is not the outcome the Government or the Opposition wanted. It is not the outcome that Australians wanted. Our thoughts today are with Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran's family and friends, with their legal team and with the consular staff who worked so hard over recent months and years to get a different outcome.
ADAMS: The Prime Minister moved very quickly this morning to remove our Ambassador to Indonesia. Your response to that? Is it enough?
PLIBERSEK: Well, Labor certainly supports the removal for a time of Australia's Ambassador to Indonesia and also the suspension of high level meetings between Australian ministers and their Indonesian counterparts. It might be that further action is appropriate and we will discuss that in days and weeks to come.
ADAMS: It must be very difficult for our leaders to balance the huge amount of public anger and distress that there is today with, I suppose, maintaining a future relationship between the two countries. How do you see that relationship in future?
PLIBERSEK: Well, Australia and Indonesia have had a good and strong relationship for many, many decades and it is a relationship that will be important for our future. But it is impossible not to say to the President of Indonesia and to the Government that we are deeply disturbed, hurt and angered as a people about the refusal of the Indonesian Government to grant clemency to these two young men, who had so changed, so reformed, made such a positive contribution in the later years of their life.
ADAMS: Just quickly, the role of the Australian Federal Police, there has been much made of that in this case. Should they bear more responsibility in all of this?
PLIBERSEK: We think the Australian Federal Police do a wonderful job protecting Australians but changes were made in 2009 to the guidelines in cooperation on cases similar to this. I think a question for another day is whether those guidelines have been changed enough.
ADAMS: We will have to leave it there for now. Tanya Plibersek, thank you so much for your time this afternoon.