Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Coroner defends no-ransom policy at inquest on Melbourne backpacker..., murdered by Khmer Rouge ^ | 19th September 2012 | Shannon Deery

Posted on 09/21/2012 3:24:38 PM PDT by naturalman1975

FORMER foreign minister Gareth Evans has welcomed a coronial finding that cleared the Australian government of any wrongdoing over the death of Melbourne backpacker David Wilson.

Victorian David Wilson was one of three foreigners taken hostage, tortured and killed by the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia.

Youth worker Wilson, 29, Briton Mark Slater and Frenchman Jean Michel Braquet were abducted when their train was ambushed southwest of Phnom Penh in 1994.

They were killed after two months of negotiations for their freedom.

The Khmer Rouge had demanded a ransom of $US50,000 in gold for each of the hostages.

But the men were murdered after negotiations between the Cambodian and Australian governments and their captors broke down.

The Australian government maintained its policy of not paying ransoms and refused to accept private offers of the money.

The policy had been heavily criticised by Wilson’s family, including father Peter, who has previously said the government didn’t do enough to save his son.

Today coroner Iain West said the Australian government could not be criticised for its actions.

"I am satisfied there is no legitimate reason for criticising the Australian government for opposing or not co-operating in the payment of a ransom," he said.

"The principle behind not doing so is sound and internationally acknowledged.

"Similarly, there is no basis for criticising the decision to abstain from taking diplomatic measures involving threats to limit or cease provision of foreign aid as a means to manipulate or place pressure upon the conduct of another sovereign nation."

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Australia/New Zealand; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
It is always a temptation to an armed and agile nation
To call upon a neighbour and to say
"We invaded you last night
we are quite prepared to fight,
Unless you pay us cash to go away."

And that is called asking for Dane-geld,
And the people who ask it explain
That you've only to pay 'em the Dane-geld
And then you'll get rid of the Dane!

It is always a temptation for a rich and lazy nation,
To puff and look important and to say
"Though we know we should defeat you
We have not the time to meet you.
We will therefore pay you cash to go away."

And that is called paying the Dane-geld
But we've proved it again and again,
That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
You never get rid of the Dane.

It is wrong to put temptation in the path of any nation,
For fear they should succumb and go astray
So when you are requested
To pay up or be molested,
You will find it better policy to say:

"We never pay any-one Dane-geld,
No matter how trifling the cost
For the end of that game is oppression and shame,
And the nation that pays it is lost!"

1 posted on 09/21/2012 3:24:41 PM PDT by naturalman1975
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: naturalman1975
If you go to a foreign country, you leave behind the protection of your government. Uncle Sugar will not pay ransom, & is unlikely to be able to help you.

It amazes me to hear of people who would never walk through their local ghetto, yet backpack through some of the most dangerous places in the world. Duh!

Young people are often naive & ignorant. It is important for parents to explain the possible dangers of traveling abroad, & make CLEAR that Mommy & Daddy can do nothing to prevent your murder or keep you out of a corrupt jail.

2 posted on 09/21/2012 4:05:54 PM PDT by Mister Da (The mark of a wise man is not what he knows, but what he knows he doesn't know!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Mister Da
Young people are often naive & ignorant

When I was young I was naive and ignorant. So I joined the Marine Corps.

3 posted on 09/21/2012 4:42:51 PM PDT by BBell (And Now for Something Completely Different)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: naturalman1975

Westerners have to be aware that when they travel to the Third World,particularly a war torn areas,they put thenselves at risk in all kinds of ways.Governments can’t be paying huge ransoms...or even small the thugs of such regions.As ugly as it might seem the Australian gov’t did the right thing under the circumstances.

4 posted on 09/21/2012 4:43:54 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative (If Obama's Reelected Imagine The Mess He'll Inherit!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: naturalman1975

Why is a coroner nmaking this pronouncement? Perhaps FR Aussies can clarify. The coroner is issuing a finding of lack of culpability for the government. Why is that judgment within the purview of a coroner? Or are Australian coroners different animals than US coroners?

5 posted on 09/21/2012 5:33:35 PM PDT by Houghton M.
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Houghton M.

In Australia (as in most of the Commonwealth), a special court proceeding called an Inquest is required in any case where a death is violent or unnatural (or unexplained). The proceeeding is presided over by a Coroner acting in the role of a judge. The Coroner is required to render a verdict on four questions - the identity of the deceased, the place of death, the time of death, and the circumstances surrounding the deceaseds death.

It’s on this last point that the Coroner has ruled in this case.

The role of a medical examiner is separate (although some Coroners are Doctors) - a Coroner will hear evidence from the medical examiner in many cases, of course.

A coroners ruling has no specific force by itself, but can lead to, and influence, other judicial actions.

6 posted on 09/21/2012 7:21:39 PM PDT by naturalman1975 ("America was under attack. Australia was immediately there to help." - John Winston Howard)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Mister Da
If you go to a foreign country, you leave behind the protection of your government.

Oh horsehockey. This excuse for a government won't provide protection unless there is something in it for them.

Uncle Sugar will not pay ransom, & is unlikely to be able to help you.

That depends on who you are and how much media coverage you can muster.

7 posted on 09/21/2012 7:32:33 PM PDT by Sarajevo (Don't think for a minute that this excuse for a President has America's best interest in mind.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Mister Da

As any seasoned traveler knows, you buy Kidnap, Ransom and Extortion Insurance when traveling through scary places.

Some of these companies have seasoned and well-trained mercenaries willing to get you out of tough spots. The policy may include search and rescue and a helicopter gunship filled with commandoes if needed.

This is good information to learn about, knowing that the government won’t send a platoon of Marines to rescue you if you get your stupid ass nabbed by Teddy the Terrorist.

If I remember correctly, the policy costs about $200 annually for a basic rescue me package.

8 posted on 09/22/2012 7:06:36 AM PDT by sergeantdave (The FBI has declared war on the Marine Corps)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson