Australia's obligations under The Refugee Convention
20 June 2013
While it is an imperfect instrument, Australia should do more, not less, than The Refugee Convention requires, argues Professor Ben Saul.
In an opinion piece for the Sydney Morning Herald, Professor Saul writes that under Australian law, indefinitie immigration detention is permitted and that both major parties support it through exporting it to Nauru and Papua New Guinea.
"Yet, indefinite detention is an unambiguous violation of international law, as the United Nations has often advised Australia," he asserts.
"For whatever cultural reasons, Australia is an arrogant outlaw when it comes to valuing the precious human liberty of those other than ourselves.
We should not constantly erode it (The Refugee Convention), leaving the wretched of the earth more vulnerable, appealing to the lesser nature of our fellow citizens - we who rank among the world's richest and most content."
Contact: Greg Sherington
Phone: +61 2 9351 0202