Remember when John Key assured us that kiwis being detained in Australian gulags could safely return "home" to New Zealand and pursue their appeals against deportation from here? Turns out he was wrong - the Australians lied to his face:
New Zealand has asked for an urgent "please explain" after evidence that Australia could have breached crucial assurances it made about sending detainees across the Tasman.
Justice Minister Amy Adams has come out strongly this morning after an Australian lawyer released evidence that apparently undermines assurances personally given to Prime Minister John Key by his counterpart Malcolm Turnbull.
"That form on the face of it certainly raises some concerns, and we have gone back to them and said they need to explain, because we expect them to stand by the assurances they have made to us, and to New Zealanders," Ms Adams said.
And Labour leader Andrew Little says if the Australians have misled New Zealand, "that is a pretty nasty, conniving thing to go and do".
But its about the level the Australia-New Zealand relationship is at: we expect them to deal honestly with us, and they cheat and lie. And unfortunately, I expect there'll be nothing that can be done about it - regardless of what the politicians say, signing this onerous form (which also involves agreeing to pay the hyper-inflated costs of your own persecution) will be regarded by bureaucrats as conclusive evidence that the victims have waived their rights. So they'll meet their deportation targets, and these kiwis will have their lives ruined.
Still, it does show how useless Key's "relationship-based" foreign policy is. Being "mates" with Turnbull isn't worth shit, any more than playing golf with Obama is. All it gets is photo opportunities for the PM. Which is great for him, but absolutely worthless to the rest of us.