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Immigration and Citizenship

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Labor's first steps on a compassionate approach to refugees

Labor's crawl towards a more compassionate approach to refugees does not change their continued support for cruel and ineffective policies, Greens Spokesperson for Immigration Nick McKim says.

"These are baby steps only, and Australia needs this to be the beginning of a more compassionate and humane approach to people seeking Australia's protection," Senator McKim said.

"It’s time for Labor to add some vertebrae to their newly formed spine and reject offshore detention and boat turnbacks."

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Time for Labor to find a spine and reject refugee cruelty

It's time for Labor to grow a spine and reject the government's latest deliberate cruelty against refugees, Australian Greens Immigration spokesperson Nick McKim says.

"Labor should not need to wait for the legislation to land before deciding whether it has the strength to take a principled stand," Senator McKim said.

“They need to decide whether they are going to line up with the Coalition and One Nation, or whether they have the compassion and strength to vote this hateful legislation down.”

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Government hits new lows in asylum seeker politics

The Government has sunk to a new low in its latest attempt to punish innocent people seeking asylum, Australian Greens Immigration spokesperson Nick McKim says.

"The proposed new laws are an escalation of the cynical race to the bottom which sees our fellow human beings again used as a tool to seek domestic political advantage," Senator McKim said.

"This is about absorbing nothing more than One Nation votes."

"People are languishing on Manus Island and Nauru because of the government's incompetence and refusal to find a solution."

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Government's backdown on doctors' Border Force gag

The Greens have welcomed the removal of the Border Force Act gag on doctors, but have called for it to be removed from all other detention centre workers and contractors.

"This is a humiliating backdown by the Government and an admission that all departmental workers and contractors were in fact gagged by Section 42 of the Border Force Act," Australian Greens Leader Senator Richard Di Natale said.

"This gives the lie to the government's claim that workers and contractors are protected as whistle-blowers."

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Amnesty International's report demands a response

Amnesty International's Island of Despair report should force members of the government and Labor Party to publicly renounce Australia's deliberately cruel offshore detention regime.

Australian Greens Leader Richard Di Natale said the report was an indictment on successive governments. 

“This is a policy that systematically tears families apart, robs kids of any hope and deprives them of a future," Senator Di Natale said.

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Government confirms $20 million immigration jail being built on PNG

The Federal government has today confirmed it is spending $20 million building a new immigration jail in Papua New Guinea to open by the end of next year.

"The Australian government is spending millions of dollars on new offshore jails, all the while claiming that their policies are working," Greens Immigration spokesperson Senator Nick McKim says.

"This is on top of the $4 billion plus the government has confirmed has been spent on Manus Island and Nauru in the last three years."

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Government stalls on resolution to Manus Island impasse

The Government continues to flail about with no solution for the stranded people in Australia's care on Manus Island, Greens Immigration spokesperson Nick McKim says.

"Two months ago, the Government pledged that the illegal Manus Island detention centre would close, and the men there would be resettled," Senator McKim said.

"It now appears that the Government is trying to weasel out of this commitment and the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court decision."

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Dutton admits failure over Manus Island

The release of the recent communication guide for Manus Island detainees shows Immigration Minister Peter Dutton remains without a plan to deal with the centre's imminent closure, Greens Immigration spokesperson Nick McKim says.

"The guide makes it clear that the government has no plan whatsoever for refugees who do not wish to settle in Papua New Guinea and are unable to return to their countries of origin," Senator McKim said.

"The only reasonable outcome is to bring all Manus Island detainees to Australia, in line with our moral and legal obligations."

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Pretty speeches abroad, human rights violations at home

The Prime Minister's pitch for UN Human Rights Council Membership appears to be operating in a parallel universe, the Australian Greens said today.

"Australia's own record of human rights violations is facing international condemnation like never before, and until the bipartisan race to the bottom ceases, the Government has no hope of making a persuasive case for Membership," Acting Greens leader Senator Scott Ludlam said today.

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Australia's Humanitarian Intake

Prime Minister Turnbull has confirmed overnight that Australia’s humanitarian intake will remain below 2012-13 levels, Greens Immigration spokesperson Nick McKim says.

“All Mr Turnbull has done is confirm the government will lock in a reduction to Australia’s Humanitarian Program from 2012-13 levels,” Senator McKim said.

“Of course his silence on a resolution for people detained indefinitely on Manus Island and Nauru remains absolutely deafening.”

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