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Op-ed: Australia must act beyond self-interest

If we needed any more evidence that a large part of the Abbott government's foreign affairs agenda is motivated purely by domestic power games over refugees, we need look no further than the current session of the UN Human Rights Committee in Geneva.

A vote is due there tonight on a resolution endorsing an international investigation into war crimes and human rights abuses during the Sri Lankan civil war.

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Greens will block repeal of terror laws monitor

Penny Wright 20 Mar 2014

Expert oversight of Australia's counter-terrorism laws cannot be called "red tape", Australian Greens spokesperson for legal affairs Senator Penny Wright has said.

Senator Wright said the Abbott Government should be red-faced about using red tape repeal day to take away human rights oversight by seeking to dismantle the Independent National Security Legislation Monitor.

"Successive governments have ignored the recommendations of Bret Walker to fix the over-zealous Howard counter-terrorism laws," Senator Wright said.

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Greens call for Royal Commission into offshore detention incidents and death

The Australian Greens have called on Tony Abbott to initiate a Royal Commission into the conditions and management of Australia's offshore detention camps, which led to the death of an Iranian refugee while in Australia's care on Manus Island.

"The tragedy of a refugee killed while in Australia's care should be the final nail in the coffin for Labor and the Abbott government's morally bankrupt and cruel offshore processing regime," Australian Greens Leader, Senator Christine Milne said.

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Senate calls for Australian Government to back Sri Lankan war crimes investigation

As the international community prepares to vote at the March meeting of the United Nations General Assembly Human Rights Council on a war crimes investigation for Sri Lanka, the Australian Greens have moved a successful Senate motion calling for the Australian government to support the independent investigation.

"The Australian Senate has sent a powerful message to the UN and international community about supporting an international independent war crimes investigation in Sri Lanka," Greens Leader Christine Milne said.

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Greens on the appointment of Tim Wilson to the Human Rights Commission

Penny Wright 17 Dec 2013

"Attorney General George Brandis laid his ideological cards on the table with this appointment," Senator Wright said.

"Although this government is using the language of freedom, they cannot be trusted to look out for all Australians.

"The Attorney General has already made it clear he thinks some human rights are more important than others, including that free speech ought to trump anti-discrimination laws.

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Take back torture comments, Senate urges Prime Minister

Prime Minister Tony Abbott will be asked to justify his remarks excusing torture in Sri Lanka following the success of an Australian Greens motion today.

The motion by Senator Penny Wright and Senator Lee Rhiannon called on Mr Abbott to retract his comments that 'we accept that sometimes in difficult circumstances difficult things happen' and was passed with the support of the opposition.

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