Sunrise, interview with David Koch

  • Transcript, E&OE
14 August 2017

JOURNALIST: Joining menow is Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop. Minister, thanks forjoining us. Is this right, this loophole? Will the Government move toclose it?

JULIE BISHOP: Kochie, whenever the Australian FederalPolice have asked for more powers or more legislative support for theiroperations, we have done our very best to provide it. We areinvestigating this claim, and of course our security at airports isone of the Australian Government's highest priorities. Over the yearswe have constantly reviewed and upgraded the security at airports and wehave certainly given the Australian Federal Police significantly moresupport, more resources, and more legislative power to carryout their operations.

JOURNALIST: So if it is a loophole, youwill close it immediately which is terrific.

JULIE BISHOP: That'sright.

JOURNALIST: Now, North Koreais reported to be putting the final touches on a plan to fire four missilesinto the Pacific waters around the US territory of Guam. Do you thinkNorth Korea will go through with this? Are they fair dinkum?

JULIE BISHOP: North Korea has made manythreats over the years, but they have also carried out a number oftests. They have clearly developed an intercontinental ballistic missile,how operational it is is another question. The fear is that theycould acquire the ability to develop a miniaturised nuclear device. Theyhave conducted a number of nuclear tests, probably five, in defiance of UNSecurity Council resolutions. So they have clearly advanced,technologically speaking, more quickly than the world had expected, and this threatof dumping a nuclear payload, or firing an intercontinental ballisticmissile into the Pacific around Guam, is clearly deeply concerning. Whatwe must do is use every tool in our diplomatic arsenal to talk NorthKorea into changing its behaviour and also impose the sanctions whichwill use economic leverage to make them change their conduct.

JOURNALIST: What do you think of PaulKeating over the weekend who said, "Look you're not going to change theirbehaviour because they put so much on the line with this that if they pullback, there's be an uprising in North Korea. Kim Jong-un and the generals can'tchange that behaviour. So bring them into the camp, sort of treat them likethe Soviets, try and control them." Is that more viable?

JULIE BISHOP: We have sought to involveNorth Korea in dialogue before, I believe that is what the UnitedStates is also seeking to do, to bring them back to the table. The Six PartyTalks broke up in 2008, but at that time North Korea was at least talkingabout allowing inspectors in to check on its statement that it had stopped itsnuclear missile testing, its nuclear weapons testing. However they then threwthe international experts out, they wouldn't allow the independent observers toinspect their programs. So North Korea has a history of making and breakingpromises when it comes to their missile and nuclear programs, but I believe itis worth every effort to try and bring them into the tent, to have a discussionwith them, a dialogue with them.

JOURNALIST: It is certainly creatingnervousness around the world. Minister, thanks for joining us.

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