Australia is accused of breaching its responsibilities towards United Nations
International experts in refugee and human rights law have accused Australia of trying to breach its responsibilities towards the United Nations. The reason for this is that the country is trying to pass off to Papua New Guinea its responsibility to process the claims of seven West Papuan asylum seekers. The asylum seekers told the Australian immigration officials that they have feared for their life after having condemned the Indonesian human right abuses in West Papua. The Australian Immigration Minister Scott Morisson announced that the seven refugees have been recently reported as a result of Memorandum signed between Australian and Papual New Guinea to prevent PNG being used as a transit country for asylum seekers hoping to make it to Australia. The agreement postulates that Australia can return asylum seekers to Papual New Guinea if they have spend more than seven days on the territory of PNG before arriving in Australia. When questioned by the official of Australian Department of Immigration and citizenship, the refugees have spent only two days on the territory of PNG, despite that fact they were deported. When questioned on this, Morrison said there had been “a concession agreed between the two governments”. According to Savitri Taylor, who is a director of research in the school of law at La Trobe University, Australian government is not allowed to use the agreement to wash its hands, but has to determine whether the asylum seekers have a meaningful case and are really threatened by persecution. According to the United Nations by refusing to accept the refugee applications Australia has breached its international responsibilities.
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