We can't afford to be misty-eyed when it comes to protecting the nation's borders, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says.
A tough-talking Malcolm Turnbull has warned Australians cannot be misty-eyed about asylum-seeker boat arrivals.
The prime minister vowed none of the asylum seekers being held at the Manus Island detention centre, soon to be closed by the Papua New Guinea government, will ever make their way to Australia.
"We cannot be misty-eyed about this. We have to be very clear and determined in our national purpose," he told reporters in Hobart on Thursday.
Mr Turnbull said he looked forward to discussions with the PNG government on what to do with the hundreds of asylum seekers who are in limbo due to the centre's impending closure.
But he is adamant allowing them to be resettled in Australia would encourage people smugglers and drownings at sea.
"We must have secure borders and we do and we will, and they will remain so, as long as I am the prime minister of this country," Mr Turnbull said.
The Greens say the saga is about fear-mongering and winning votes before an election.
"Malcolm Turnbull should be better than this," immigration spokeswoman Sarah Hanson-Young told reporters in Canberra.