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Notice given 10 July 2003

1609  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—

(1) Was detainee Hammed Qhatani (VIL 14) ever refused delivery of postcards handed to centre officers at Woomera by nursing staff or anyone else; if so, why.

(2) Was Mr Qhatani tortured as a child in Iraq.

(3) Did Mr Qhatani have a bullet in his body.

(4) Did Mr Qhatani request (at Villawood or Woomera) for this bullet to be removed.

(5) Was a bullet removed from Mr Qhatani; if not, why not.

(6) (a) How long was Mr Qhatani under special surveillance in detention in Australia; and (b) why.

1612  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—With reference to asylum seekers in detention who go on hunger strikes: (a) What instructions are given to staff to deal with these circumstances; and (b) can a copy of these instructions be provided.

1615  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—With reference to the transfer of people to asylum-seeker detention in Australia or overseas:

(1) Are such people handcuffed; if so: (a) how are they handcuffed; and (b) under what conditions and instructions.

(2) Are people on plane flights allowed to urinate and/or defecate in private; if not, what are the conditions or restrictions.

(3) Is it true that on some flights, taking some hours, no detainees have used toilet facilities because of the refusal of privacy.

(4) What is the longest flight, for example, Christmas Island to the mainland, which has been, or is likely to be, undertaken by detainees, in terms of time.

1619  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts—

(1) What has been the total Commonwealth funding given to Telstra since the Coalition came to government.

(2) Given that Telstra is 49 per cent privately-owned, does the Commonwealth funding given to Telstra provide a benefit to these private shareholders; if so, what is the rationale for funding the private half of the company.