Aus MP calls for improvement in relations with India
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Last Updated: Thursday, February 04, 2010, 08:37
Melbourne: An Australian Member of Parliament has asked the country's government to focus on working on diplomatic relations with India.

Federal Labor MP Kelvin Thomson said it would be "very unfortunate" if attacks on students damaged Australia's diplomatic ties with India, a newspaper reported.

"The diplomatic relationship is clearly something that we all have to work on," he said adding "We have to work on it; the Indians have to work on it.

Thomson said he had visited an Indian student who had been knifed during a 2 am attack in his Melbourne electorate of Wills.

The racial attacks are a source of great concern to me and I'm sure to all Australians. It is a dreadful thing and we all have a responsibility to do everything we can to discourage those kind of attacks, he said.

The Indian students have been in a position of risk doing late-night, low-paid jobs, Thomson said.

"That's an unfortunate consequence of the way in which they have been brought to Australia," he said, adding private colleges and agents were ripping off the students.

Commenting on the situation, Liberal MP Stuart Robert said Foreign Minister Stephen Smith needed to sit down with the High Commissioner.

He urged Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to revisit Australia's ban on selling uranium to Indian, which is not a signatory to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty.

"Rudd's foreign policy is over all the place with India," he said citing that Canada has already selling uranium to India while US was considering it.


First Published: Thursday, February 04, 2010, 08:37

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