on air now

Tony Abbott: ‘You cannot have countries like Russia unleashing murder and mayhem’

Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott has called for sanctions against Russia to be tightened after two Russian intelligence officers were ordered to leave the country within the week.

Australia has joined than 20 other nations which have taken similar action following the poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter in the UK.

“You cannot have countries like Russia unleashing murder and mayhem,” he says.

Mr Abbott has also taken aim at Russian President Vladimir Putin’s claim flight MH17 was shot down by the Ukrainians, saying it’s “absolute nonsense”.

“A Russian missile battery went over the border… it fired, it brought down that jet, it killed all those people including all those Australians and then it went back to Russia.

“I’m not saying that President Putin ordered that but certainly he permits the Russians to interfere in this way in the affairs of his neighbours and it’s wrong.

“It’s an atrocity… it’s against international law.

“I think it’s absolutely high time that decent countries like Britain, America and Australia stood up very strongly to all of this.”

On the closure of AGL’s Liddell coal-fired power station, Mr Abbott says it must be kept open.

“We’ve got to keep it open. It is the Commonwealth Government’s responsibility to act and act fast.”

Click PLAY below for the full interview