Foreign minister Bob Carr has told young Australians his government “can’t be your nanny” when they travel overseas and warned them to take responsibility for their own behaviour.
Speaking after the death of the third Australian in Laos this year, Senator Carr said the “Australian taxpayer can’t assume the huge burden of looking after you when you go overseas.”
“Warnings are issued but in many of these cases it is clear that warnings carry little weight,” he said in Bangkok Thursday after a four-day visit to Laos.
The Department of Foreign Affairs has confirmed the death of a 21 year-old man in Laos on Wednesday.
No details of the death are available.
The Launceston Examiner identified the man as Chris Horrocks from Launceston who was described by friends as “peaceful, good natured and caring.”
Senator Carr said only one percent of one million Australians who travel to Thailand every year seek consular assistance.
“I think personal responsibility comes in here….we can’t be your nanny while you are abroad,” he said.
“There is one message I have got and that is personal responsibility.”
In January two Darwin men died within four days of each other in Laos, a popular destination for backpackers.
Since Christmas three other Australians have died while holidaying in South-East Asia.