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Tuesday, 19 September 1972
Page: 891

Senator JESSOP (SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - I wish to ask a question of the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration, ls the Minister aware of the concern that has been expressed and is being expressed by Australian citizens that individuals with criminal records have been admitted to Australia? Can he say what screening process is adopted by immigration authorities in countries such as Yugoslavia with regard to ensuring that prospective migrants do not have criminal records? In view of the recent terrorist atrocities in Sydney, what additional measures does the Government propose to take with respect to future Yugoslav migrants?

Senator GREENWOOD - The latter part of the honourable senator's question as to what additional or other measures are to be taken is something which I must leave to the Minister for Immigration to answer because it is unquestionably an area to which he is giving his consideration. As to the methods of screening at the present time, Yugoslav migrants in essence come to Australia from 2 places. They come from Yugoslavia proper or they are Yugoslavs from outside of Yugoslavia possibly from other European countries, who apply for admission to Australia. They would go through the screening processes that are applicable in the places in which they make their applications. As far as the country of Yugoslavia is concerned we rely, as we must, upon the information supplied to us by the Yugoslav Government. With regard to persons who come from outside Yugoslavia, the best checks are made on the information which is available. The details of the screening procedures are not within my knowledge. I am not sure whether it is in the public interest to provide the details of precisely what is done by way of screening, but I know that the Minister for Immigration has said previously that the screening procedures are regularly checked to ensure that we do not have persons with known criminal records coming into this country. That is the policy which the Government does follow. I feel I should forward the honourable senator's question to the Minister for Immigration so that, if he can add to what I have had to say, he will be able to do so.

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