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SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is considering trying to stem a flood of would-be asylum-seekers through a new alliance with Indonesia, a report said on Saturday.
In a plan reminiscent of the controversial "Pacific Solution" of his conservative predecessor John Howard, the Weekend Australian newspaper reported Australian aid would be massively increased and used to fund detention centres in Indonesia.
The plan, which would also involve broader intelligence sharing, will be discussed next week when Rudd travels to Jakarta to attend President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's inauguration for his second term, the paper said.
A key part would be Australian assistance to resettle asylum seekers already in detention in Indonesia, the paper said.
A spokesman for Rudd had no immediate comment on the report when contacted by Reuters.
Under Howard, asylum seekers were processed offshore, mainly on the Pacific island nation of Nauru. Rudd's centre-left government abandoned that policy after his election in 2007, but critics say his stance has encouraged a new upsurge in arrivals.
This year hundreds have travelled in rickety boats, mainly from Indonesia, and Australia's processing centre on the Indian island possession of Christmas Island is struggling to cope.
The asylum-seekers mostly come from war-ravaged countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.
(Editing by Alex Richardson)

Reuters