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The Australian response to asylum seekers


Well-Known Member
Hi guys, I've been quite dismayed at the Australian asylum seeker policy, and when I read the refugee convention for myself the other day, it has been the tipping point.

For those of you who don't know, on Friday Kevin Rudd (prime minister of Australia), announced a new policy: that asylum seekers arriving to Australia by boat, if found to be refugees (and 90% of them are genuine refugees) would be settled permanently in Papua New Guinea, and NOT Australia. You can see his address here I've made a full-page article on it at my blog, which I'll soon be updating with further information, and it's at (and I've put up two more videos of interest on there as well): http://blog.aractus.com/boat-people.php Hopefully I'll have time to update it again later tonight with some material from the convention itself.

Now I am deeply concerned about this because it goes directly against the refugee convention. I'm a conservative person, I'm not a "liberal", I do believe that border protection is a very serious issue, but I want to raise my concern with you all, and let you make up your own minds. The refugee convention can be read here and I want to share two paragraphs with you:

  • Article 31, Paragraph 1:
    The Contracting States shall not impose penalties, on account of their illegal entry or presence, on refugees who, coming directly from a territory where their life or freedom was threatened in the sense of article 1, enter or are present in their territory without authorization, provided they present themselves without delay to the authorities and show good cause for their illegal entry or presence.
    Article 33, Paragraph 1:
    No Contracting State shall expel or return (“refouler”) a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where his life or freedom would be threatened on account of his race, religion, nationality, member-ship of a particular social group or political opinion.

I believe that there is no other conclusion to be had, but to the effect that the new policy by Rudd is Illegal (under international law) and importantly that it goes completely against the intention of the convention.

I'd love to know what you guys think about this, and whether you think I'm overreacting to what I perceive to be akin to human-rights abuse by the state.
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