Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


No "Security Reason" For Detaining Asylum Seeker

Green MP Keith Locke today rejected the Minister of Immigration's justification for detaining an Algerian asylum seeker in Mt Eden prison for over two months.

"Jim Sutton, speaking in Parliament for the Minister, Lianne Dalziel, could not give me 'exceptional grounds' for detaining the Algerian, which UN recommendations say are the only justification for imprisoning asylum seekers," said Mr Locke.

"All Mr Sutton did was detail the case history of this asylum seeker, alleging that he had exchanged his Algerian with Italian documentation before getting to New Zealand, and had been refused refugee status in Australia.

Mr Locke said travelling on false documentation was standard practice among refugees who could not get visas to reach their host country otherwise. Travellers on Italian passports do not require visas to enter New Zealand.

"We may not approve of such deception from asylum seekers, but it doesn't invalidate their claim for refuge, or mean we have to be protected from them by prison bars," said Mr Locke. "To suggest this man poses a security threat to New Zealand is laughable."

Mr Locke also said the result of a previous Australian refugee application was irrelevant to claims before the Refugee Status Appeals Authority.

"Imprisonment is supposed to be a measure of last resort in refugee cases, because of our humanitarian concern," he said.

I have sought a personal meeting with the Minister to pursue this case and make sure that the government has a policy of treating all asylum seekers in a compassionate manner," said Mr Locke.

Keith Locke MP: 04 470 6710 or 025 528 353 Gina Dempster, Press secretary: 04 470 6723 or 021 1265 289

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news