Senate debates

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Bills

Migration Legislation Amendment (Regional Processing and Other Measures) Bill 2012; In Committee

6:55 pm

Photo of Sarah Hanson-YoungSarah Hanson-Young (SA, Australian Greens) Share this | Hansard source

So the government has no definition of indefinite detention except that it is indefinite. Let us put this in context: 76 years is the current waiting list in Malaysia for a refugee to be resettled, so for somebody to not take advantage of seeking asylum in Australia we would need to dump them on Nauru or Manus Island for 76 years. The average across the region is somewhere in the vicinity of 20 years.

Can the minister answer these questions for me please. What is the advantage of a refugee who has to wait for 20 years in a camp in Indonesia? What advantage does that person have when they are amongst the world's most disadvantaged? How does that compare to the advantage of a refugee dumped on Nauru by the Australian government, contrary to the convention, with no guaranteed protections, no access to natural justice, for 20 years? What is the advantage, Minister, of being amongst the world's most disadvantaged people?

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