You are invited!
Despite the emergency in Afghanistan, the Australian Government is continuing its cruel anti-refugee policies of the past. We need to show our government that ordinary Australian are opposed to policies that harm Human Rights.
Rally for Afghan Refugees When: Sunday12th September from 2pm - 4 pm Where: King George Square, Brisbane City QLD 4000, Australia RSVP here
We must all work together for the common cause of upholding the rights of refugees. Please support this rally, bring your banners, come as a group, come as a family, come as friends and help raise the demand for: ▪ Permanent visas not temporary protection
▪ Increase Afghan refugee intake
▪ Family reunion rights
▪ End the ban on bringing UNHCR recognised refugees from Indonesia
Hassan Ghulam, Hazara community elder
Amy MacMahon, Greens member for South Brisbane
Graham Perrett, Labor member for Moreton
Background The government has only earmarked 3000 places for Afghan refugees. This is not an increase in overall numbers. It's a simple reallocation of places within the existing and historically low humanitarian annual intake of just 13,750. We're calling for a special category intake of at least 20,000 Afghan refugees, over and above the annual humanitarian intake, and for this to include all the UNHCR recognised refugees currently stranded in Indonesia because of Australia's 2014 ban on bringing refugees from there.
Thousands of Afghan refugees already live in Australia but instead of permanent protection they have only been granted Temporary Protection Visas (TPVs). These visas deny them the right to bring their families to safety and also put them in constant fear of being returned to danger. The government punishes them for coming to Australia by boat, but as the recent scenes at Kabul airport show, there is no orderly 'right way' to seek asylum.
If boats can get to Australia, they should be welcomed. We're calling for an end to TPVs and for existing TPVs (and bridging visas) to be converted to permanent visas.
Australia currently has Afghan refugees detained in detention centres or held in limbo on Nauru and PNG. This is obscene. They are victims of both the Taliban and of Australia's cruel anti refugee policies. It's time those in detention were released and those offshore were brought to Australia and allowed to permanently settle.
Australia has a special responsibility for Afghanistan. Australian troops along with US and other western troops have helped create the chaos that killed many thousands of civilians. Some Australian troops are currently facing war crime charges.
The government's anti-refugee policies have got to go. It's time to welcome Afghan refugees.