Donald Trump: US president backs 2014 Australian anti-illegal immigration campaign

US President Donald Trump is using an old and controversial Australian government anti-illegal immigration campaign to support his own hard-line US-Mexico border protection agenda.

Mr Trump, while flying to the G20 leaders meeting in Osaka, Japan, posted a tweet to his 61.4 million followers with pictures of the 2014 campaign poster.

“These flyers depict Australia’s policy on Illegal Immigration,” Mr Trump wrote.

The tweet depicts four confronting posters from 2014 when Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison was immigration minister.

At the time they were slammed by human rights activists as being distasteful and embarrassing to Australia.

One of the posters features a photo of a boat on a rough, open ocean with the warning in red capitalised letters: “NO WAY. YOU WILL NOT MAKE AUSTRALIA HOME”.

Another says: “Australia’s borders are closed to illegal immigration”.

Mr Trump’s strong stance against illegal immigrants crossing from Mexico into the US has become a major issue ahead of the 2020 presidential election.

Scott Morrison
Scott Morrison (AAP)

He has been under fire for his treatment of asylum-seekers, with children separated from their parents and locked up in stark conditions.

Mr Morrison, who will meet up with Mr Trump in Osaka, backed the posters in 2014, describing them as part of a ”targeted campaign”.

“This will complement the offshore communications campaign about the government’s strong border protection policies which comprises the overwhelming allocation of resources in which messaging is delivered directly through transit and source countries,” a spokesman for the minister said at the time.

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