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Dutton slammed over 'persecuted' white farmers remarks

Dutton slammed over 'persecuted' white farmers remarks

"The people we're talking about want to work hard, they want to contribute to a country like Australia", Dutton said.

South Africa rebuked an Australian government minister on Wednesday for suggesting white South African farmers needed help from a "civilized country" and should get special visas due to the "horrific circumstances" they faced at home.

Peter Dutton's order came after an Austrialian media house ran an explosive article alleging that white farmers in South Africa are being murdered, tortured and having their land forcibly seized.

Afriforum, a rights group that mainly represents the views of the white Afrikaner minority, describes being a white farmer as one of the most unsafe jobs in the country, saying a white farmer is twice as likely to be murdered as a policemen, and four times as likely as a private citizen.

"I think in this circumstance we do need to look at the persecution that's taking place", he said.

Dutton's call for a white South African visa program is a shift away from Australia's widely criticized handling of refugees on Manus Island late a year ago, when hundreds of males were herded onto a small strip of land under the control of Papua New Guinea.

The senior Turnbull government minister, who still oversees immigration in his expanded Home Affairs portfolio, credited stories in News Corp publications for bringing the matter to his attention.




Mr Dutton told 2GB radio on Thursday white farmers in South Africa were facing violent attacks and a new plan from the government to reclaim farmland without compensation.

Asked if this could be achieved with the South African government's cooperation, Dutton replied Australia "can work with governments all around the world".

"We regret that the Australian government chose not to use the available diplomatic channels available for them to raise concerns or to seek clarification".

"That threat does not exist", the foreign ministry said.

Farm worker Mogoala Justice Ratalele (L) stand near his boss farmer Hans Bergmann (R) after an incident in which he was held at gunpoint for the theft of the chainsaw that he was working with, on November 2, 2017, in Tzaneen, South Africa. The farmers fear fatal violence following calls to transfer land ownership from black to white farmers.

AfriForum, a rights group representing primarily the white Afrikaner minority, praised Mr Dutton's comments but said it was not in favour of mass emigration, Reuters reported.


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