The Australian Greens Leader, Senator Christine Milne, introduces a motion calling on the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister to increase pressure on Egypt to secure the release of Australian journalist, Peter Greste.
Senator MILNE (Tasmania-Leader of the Australian Greens) (15:43): I move:
That the Senate-
(a) notes with concern the ongoing deterioration of democratic principles in Egypt, evidenced by:
(i) the arbitrary arrest of more than 16 000 protestors since the military coup of July 2013,
(ii) the lack of procedural fairness and due process in the judicial system, particularly the recent mass trials that sentenced 529 people in March, and a further 683 in April, to death, and
(iii) suppression of free press, including the ongoing imprisonment of Australian journalist Mr Peter Greste, and fellow Al Jazeera journalists; and
(b) calls on the Prime Minister (Mr Abbott) and the Minister for Foreign Affairs (Ms Bishop) to speak out publicly, and increase pressure on the Egyptian Government to seek the immediate release of Mr Peter Greste and the other 19 individuals detained.
Question agreed to.