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Issue #1606      August 14, 2013

Rally says “no” to PNG deal

For the third time in three weeks since Kevin Rudd announced the deal with the PNG government on July 19 to expel all asylum boat arrivals to Manus Island, Sydney refugee supporters held a rally and march on August 10.

The rally called for an end to Labor’s PNG deal and the off-shore processing policies of both Labor and the Coalition.

Speakers included Gabe Kavanagh, Amnesty International; Greens NSW MLC MP, Mehreen Faruqi; Macquarie student, Vinil Kumar and RAC speaker, Amy Thomas.

“Politics in Australia has reached a shameful low point when the major issue at the federal election is about whether Labor or the Coalition has the harshest anti-refugee policies,” said Nick Reimer for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“The cracks are already appearing in Kevin Rudd’s PNG deal. Since the student demonstration a week ago, political opposition is growing in PNG itself. And despite the fanfare about a new deal with the Nauruan government, Labor has had to admit that neither citizenship nor permanent residency will be available to refugees on Nauru.

“The shocking human rights abuses associated with the PNG deal and offshore processing must be ended. Australia is the only country in the region with the resources to process and resettle refugees. When a government so readily tramples on the rights of refugees in the desperate attempt to win an election, the human rights of us all are at risk.”   

Next article – WA State Public Service Rally to save the public sector

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