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Refugee policy needs urgent clarification



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Philip Ruddock MP M.

Federal Member for Dundas Shadow Minister for Immigration and Ethnic Affairs

Electorate Parliament House

Tel: (06) 277 4343 Fax: (06) 277 2062

Tel: (02) 858 1011 Fax: (02) 804 6739

REFU G EE POLICY NEEDS URGENT CLARIFICATION

As a matter of urgency, the Minister for Immigration Local Government and Ethnic Affairs needs to clarify the Government's refugee policy.

Has the Government reserved 14,000 places in the refugee program for refugees created by the Gulf war?

The total places allocated in the present global refugee program, including those granted temporary residence, totals only 11,000.

Only 300 of these were allocated for refugees from the Middle East.

In the light of these facts, what is the status of reported comments by Jenny Hoskin, spokesperson for the Department of Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs, that "we are already geared up for immigration emergencies and have allocated extra places, 12,000 to 14,000 of them, for Middle Eastern people as a result of the Gulf War".

Surely on a matter as significant as this, a Ministerial Announcement should have been made if any decision has been taken.

March 8 1991