JOURNALIST So how will Australia respond to the twin tragedies of Nice and Turkey? Foreign Minster Julie Bishop joins us now live from Canberra. Minister, thank you for your time.
JULIE BISHOP Good morning.
JOURNALIST Now let’s start with Nice in the wake of Friday’s attack, what lessons can Australia learn?
JULIE BISHOP We are thinking very deeply about the events of Bastille Day in Nice and, of course, we always assess the security of Australians at home and abroad after any incident like this. We are continually reviewing our policies, our resourcing and we ensure that our security, intelligence, law enforcement agencies have the legislative backing they need, the resources they need to seek to keep Australians safe, whether they are travelling overseas or whether they are home here in Australia. Every incident is shocking. In this one, a number of Australians have been involved. In fact, two remain injured in hospitals in Nice. So we know that Australians can be affected. We do what we can to remind Australians to exercise a very high degree of caution when they are travelling overseas, to avoid places where these kinds of attacks might take place, to listen to the advice that the Australian Government and the local authorities give. Ultimately, people make their own decisions about where, when and how they will travel or whether they will travel. The Australian Government can do only so much to keep Australians safe but we absolutely focus our efforts on seeking to do so.
JOURNALIST OK, 1400 Australians in Turkey at the moment. This coup on the weekend has been defeated for now. The country is far from stable. Huge implications if Turkey collapses. Is it still a reliable ally for us as Australia in the fight for Islamic State?
JULIE BISHOP I spoke with the Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu last evening. We had a long discussion about the situation. The Government is in control of the country. The coup did not succeed, it was an attempt. The Turkish Government are now treating the plotters as terrorists and this as a terrorist attack. They put it in the context of their fight against terrorism more generally. Turkey is a very complex society, made up of Islamists, secularists, nationalists, Kurds. What was interesting about this coup is it was not backed by Turkey's secular, political, military and civilian opposition. It is said to have been plotted by an Islamist division within the military. The Foreign Minister assured me that the Government will be able to control the unrest, that they will be able to bring calm to the chaos. In the meantime, I know there are many Australians who are seeking to travel through Istanbul and Ankara. I urge them to reconsider their need to travel.
JOURNALIST Absolutely. Julie Bishop, thank you for your time. What a weekend, my goodness.
JULIE BISHOP Thank you.
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