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Last Update: 17 Hour and 22 Minute ago
News code: 25033
Published Date: Saturday 17 March 2018 - 13:03:38
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HRW slams Australian minister over immigration offer to white SA farmers

HRW slams Australian minister over immigration offer to white SA farmers
World  - uman Rights Watch has accused Australian home affairs minister Peter Dutton of hypocrisy after he expressed a desire to bring "persecuted" white South African farmers to Australia on refugee visas.

Dutton recently said white farmers were facing "horrific circumstances" of land seizures and violence in South Africa and wanted his department to investigate bringing them to Australia, The Guardian reported.

He has asked his department to examine ways of fast-tracking visas for white South African farmers to gain refugee status in Australia, in a plan supported by the West Australian Liberal Party who have been pushing to "resettle persecuted minorities" in SA and Zimbabwe, according to ABC News.

"I find it breathtakingly hypocritical that government ministers would prioritise this group of white South African farmers over other groups that are equally, if not much more desperately, in need of assistance," charged Human Rights Watch Director Elaine Pearson according to SBS News.

Australia has come in for criticism over its negligent treatment of refugees in Nauru and Manus Island camps.

In 2017, Victoria's Supreme Court awarded asylum seekers in those camps Aus$70m over conditions that led to mental health problems, as a result of long periods of detention.

"International law says that if people are fleeing persecution and they should have the right to seek sanctuary, and Australia has broken that law when it comes to people that we've locked up on Manus and Nauru," said Pearson.

She argued that people from Sudan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh had experience persecution, and suggested that Dutton was perhaps ignorant of their suffering.

News Code: 25033
Published Date: Saturday 17 March 2018 - 13:03:38
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