Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Australia Must Honour Human Rights

Australian Refugee Action

The Australian government and people must take responsibility for their human rights commitments under international law, claims a coalition of groups and people in Auckland, Aotearoa (New Zealand).

The Coalition for Human Rights in Australia (CHRA) protested today at 1pm outside the Australian Consulate in Auckland to raise awareness of the plight of the people recently on the MV Tampa off the shores of Australia's territory, Christmas Island, in the Indian Ocean. The coalition protest is designed to highlight the fact that refugee status is not always permanent immigration, and that it is to avoid persecution in the home country.

``Refusing to allow people from a distressed ship into the nearest country for immigration processing to determine their status is a barbaric twist on the old White Australia immigration policy'' said CHRA member Brian van Dam.

Mr van Dam further stated that ``Under the 1951 Convention on the Status of Refugees and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that Australia is a signatory to, these people recently on the MV Tampa have the right to land and be processed in Australia. We are confident the court action taken by Victoria Council of Civil Liberties will be successful in proving the Howard governments action illegal under Australian and international law.''

The coalition are pointing out through speeches and a letter of protest presented to the Consul, that it was unjust persecution in colonial times that led to much of Australia's settlement, and that the very least Australia can do is to process the people - now on the HMAS Manoora - on shore in proper facilities in West Australia.

"These people are in limbo - unable to even claim refugee status. The fact is that the Australian government is already deeply embarrassed over their long-term incarceration of refugee applicants in concentration camps, and Howard is counting on fallout from the Tampa incident blowing over relatively quickly.'' said fellow CHRA member Jim Gladwin.

The role of Helen Clark in allowing the Howard government to escape its responsibility also attracted attention, with CHRA supporting the criticism made by the UNHCR that Clark's action will encourage other nations to shirk their human rights obligations.

``While Helen Clark is to be commended for acting on humanitarian principles, her claim that nations and the UN should ``give the [Afghan] situation more urgency'' was not supported by a commitment to shoulder any of the financial responsibility for solving the causes of the Afghan refugee crisis'', said Mr van Dam. ``No solution was offered, nor any additional aid to help solve the causes of people fleeing their lands.''

``The focus of attention must shift from the deplorable attacks that John Howard and some NZ political parties have made upon those who flee persecution, to protecting nations from the exploitative greed of others that leads to refugees - whether the exploiters are people traffickers or companies that profit from conflict in the refugees homeland'', he said. ``This must be supported by all countries - including Australia - accepting any people who arrive there for processing, and supporting those found to be refugees.''

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Crowdsale And Crowdfunding Campaign: Help Create The Future Of Independent News

Two weeks to go! The Scoop 3.0 plan aims to create NZ’s first community-owned, distributed news and media intelligence ecosystem in 2019. We believe this ScoopPro media monetisation approach can be scaled and spread globally to support local and independent news efforts in regional New Zealand and around the world.

Scoop is an ecosystem, it would not exist without those who contribute to it, read it and rely on it for professional media purposes. Generous past support from this ecosystem has enabled us to come this far in developing our business model. Support our PledgeMe Campaign>>

 

14/11: Two Years’ Progress Since The Kaikoura Earthquake

Mayor John Leggett said it was a day for reflection, but also a time to recognise the work by many people to support progress towards recovery made across Marlborough since November 2016. More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Mine Drift Re-Entry Plan To Proceed

“I’ve decided the Te Kāhui Whakamana Rua Tekau Mā Iwa - Pike River Recovery Agency, recommended course of action to enter the drift, using the existing access tunnel, is by far the safest option,” said Andrew Little. More>>

ALSO:

Appointments: New High Commissioner To Australia Announced

“Dame Annette King needs no introduction given her long running career as a parliamentarian where she has previously held a number senior Cabinet portfolios, including Justice, Police and Health. She also was Parliament’s longest serving female MP with 30 years’ service,” said Mr Peters. More>>

ALSO:

Two Years Since Kaikoura: Silvia Cartwright To Lead Inquiry Into EQC

“The inquiry will be the first of its kind under the Public Inquiries Act 2013 and will have all the powers of a Royal Commission, be independent of Government and make its report directly to the Governor-General. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Royal Commission Into Child Abuse

Obviously, it is good news that the coalition government has broadened the scope of its Royal Commission into the abuse of children, beyond its previous focus on children in state care. More>>

ALSO:

Cases Delayed: Court Staff Refuse To Handle Sentencing Papers

Dozens of court cases have reportedly been delayed, as court staff escalate industrial action at two Auckland courts by enforcing a ban on handling sentencing papers. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Primary Teachers Rolling Strikes

RNZ Report: More than 100,000 primary school students in Auckland will be home from school today as teachers and principals walk off the job for the second time this year. It's the start of a week of rolling one-day strikes around the country, after the collapse of contract negotiations last Thursday. More>>

ALSO:

"Process Was Sound": Inquiry Into Haumaha Appointment Released

The Inquiry’s purpose was to examine, identify, and report on the adequacy of the process that led to the appointment. It found the process was sound and no available relevant information was omitted. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels