Canberra: Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Tuesday that migrants needed to fully embrace “Australian values” if they wanted to become citizens.
Speaking in parliament, Turnbull urged the opposition to pass a legislation which would result in the creation of a revamped citizenship test, reports Xinhua news agency.
Under the changes proposed in April, migrants would be required to pass a tougher English literacy test, while they would also be questioned on their values – on topics such as forced marriages, sexism and gender equality.
“There is no more important title in our democracy than Australian citizen and we should make no apology for asking those who seek to join our Australian family to join us as Australian patriots committed to the values that define us committed to the values that unite us,” Turnbull said.
“We are introducing legislation to change our visa and citizenship requirements to ensure that new members of our society will embrace our values and positively contribute to our Australian society, regardless of background or religious belief.”
The Prime Minister also took the opportunity to announce that the government would be pushing for changes to metadata laws, which would allow Australia’s security agencies to access data of those deemed to be a legitimate terror threat.
He said the latest technologies which are being used by terror organisations to recruit and send messages to potential recruits, require new-age laws.
“Not so long ago, only states and large corporations had megaphones powerful enough to address a nation. Now a tweet or a YouTube video can reach millions, if not billions, in seconds,” Turnbull told the parliament.
Later, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said his party would consider supporting the metadata legislation, so long as the details are revealed in parliament for all to consider.