Thatcher’s views on migrants blatantly racist: Aus minister

Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr said British leader Margaret Thatcher made an “unabashedly racist” comment,recalling his conversation on Asian migration

Written by Press Trust Of India | Sydney | Published: April 11, 2013 1:04 am

Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr said British leader Margaret Thatcher made an “unabashedly racist” comment,recalling his conversation on Asian migration with after she left office. Carr said the “Iron Lady”,who died in London on Monday,had told him Australia could end up like Fiji “where the Indian migrants have taken over”.

“On 100 other things I would pick arguments with her,” Carr said while acknowledging that he respected Thatcher for the boldness of her leadership. “I recall one conversation I had with her in her retirement where she said something that was unabashedly racist,” he told ABC television on Tuesday from China. “She warned Australia against Asian immigration,saying that if we allowed too much of it we’d see the natives of the land,the European settlers,overtaken by migrants,” he added.

Carr said: “It reminded me that despite,yes,her greatness on those big questions,the role of the state,the evil nature of the communist totalitarianism,there was an old-fashioned quality to her that was entirely out of touch and probably explained why her party removed her in the early 90s.”

Carr said Thatcher named Pacific ocean island nation Fiji to illustrate her point. “She said ‘I like Sydney but you can’t allow the migrants’ — and in context she meant Asian migration — ‘to take over,otherwise you will end up like Fiji where the Indian migrants have taken over’. I was so astonished I don’t think I could think of an appropriate reply,” the former premier of New South Wales said.

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