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Justice for nuclear testing victims is long overdue

Scott Ludlam 21 Feb 2013

The Greens today expressed support for the bid by Australian veterans exposed to British nuclear tests in Australia to secure compensation through the Human Rights Commission, and renewed their call for the British to compensate all victims of atomic weapons testing.

Greens spokesperson for nuclear policy Senator Scott Ludlam wrote to the office of British Foreign Secretary William Hague five weeks ago urging him to give Act of Grace payments to the victims and wrote to Mr Hague again today.

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Deadly consequences of immigration mess

The Australian Greens say recent reports of lives lost at sea will continue to be repeated as long as the old parties continue down the doomed path of deterrence and blame.

“While the Labor Party and Tony Abbott’s Liberals are falling over themselves to blame each other for this mess, the Greens want to offer people safer pathways to stop the loss of life at sea,” the Greens’ immigration spokesperson said today.

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Books of Hope for children in detention

The Australian Greens have launched a ‘Books of Hope’ drive today, calling for people all around the country to donate children’s books for refugee families in Manus Island and other detention centres.

“These children are living in terrible conditions and we need to do anything we can to improve their situation,” the Greens’ immigration spokesperson, senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

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Government refuses to grant media access to offshore detention centres

After consistently ignoring independent reports of the unacceptable conditions in the Nauru and Manus Island detention centres, the government today voted against a motion calling for full media access to the island facilities.

“I think the Australian public deserve to know what the government is so desperate to keep hidden and I will continue to fight for media access to the detention centres in the future,” the Greens immigration spokesperson, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

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Carr pushes barrow for Burmese regime while repression continues

Foreign Minister Bob Carr's enthusiasm for making Burma ‘open for business' will undermine the movement for further reform, the Australian Greens warned today.

Greens spokesperson for Burma Senator Scott Ludlam said "Minister Carr's lobbying of European politicians to permanently lift sanctions on Burma is hazardous in its haste".

"The European Union suspended, rather than abolished, sanctions on Burma because there is still much work to be done on human rights and political freedom in the country.

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Balance freedom and security or put both in danger

The Australian Greens communications spokesperson, Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam, warned the Federal Government to avoid jeopardising civil liberties and human rights in the pursuit of security in the wake of the Prime Minister's national security announcements today.

"It's a positive that the Prime Minister recognises that a secure international environment is built on trust, and reaffirmed the nation's commitment to multilateralism, but some of her statements and much of the Government's ‘security' agenda causes concern.

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Another baby born into indefinite detention

A young mother named Ranjini who is facing indefinite detention in Australia has given birth to her third child; another innocent new-born who will be detained despite having committed no crime.

“What should be a joyous time for Ranjini and her family is no doubt tinged with despair as she knows her children face unreasonable and lengthy detention,” the Greens immigration spokesperson, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

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Greens welcome visas for Afghan interpreters

After introducing a bill and appealing to both the Government and the opposition to establish a special visa class for Afghan interpreters, the Greens welcome the establishment of a program that recognises the important contribution of Afghan personnel who are at risk because of their work for our defence force.

“It is essential that we recognise the contribution of these brave people and I am glad to hear that the Government has followed the Greens’ lead on this issue,” the Greens’ immigration spokesperson, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said today.

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Australia’s rights and wrongs highlighted on Human Rights Day

Sarah Hanson-Young 10 Dec 2012

Human rights groups in Australia are making themselves heard every day to the betterment of our society, but the Australian Government needs to follow their lead if real change is to be achieved, the Australian Greens said today.

"International Human Rights Day gives us all a chance to recognise the efforts of people around Australia who work tirelessly to defend the rights of the less powerful," the Greens' Human Rights spokesperson, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

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