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Notice given 1 August 2003 

1683  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs—

(1) What is the Government’s current assessment of the situation in Zimbabwe compared with its assessment at the time of the last Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).

(2) What action will the Government be requesting at the next CHOGM, scheduled for December 2003, in relation to Zimbabwe’s possible re-admission to the Commonwealth.

(3) Does the Government support Zimbabwe’s expulsion from the Commonwealth.

(4) What other options are open if the Commonwealth fails to take appropriate action to improve the situation in Zimbabwe; could options include action by the United Nations and coalitions of countries.

(5) Would Australia be willing to send a delegation of election supervisors to Zimbabwe if the electoral challenge by opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai in November 2003 is successful.

1684  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for the Environment and Heritage—With reference to the answer to question on notice no. 1370 concerning the northern peninsula of Research Bay, Tasmania, in which it was stated that ‘sites are currently being assessed by the Tasmanian Heritage Council’:

(1) Is the Minister aware that the Tasmanian Heritage Council has resolved that ‘the onus of providing information which would be considered in establishing significance was a matter for the nominator(s) and accordingly it [the Heritage Council] would not be carrying out any further research’.

(2) Given the potential and international significance of the area, does the Minister consider it adequate for an assessment by the Tasmanian Heritage Council to rely on the efforts of volunteer members of the community.

(3) In relation to the assessment and protection of the northern peninsula of Research Bay: (a) what communication has the Commonwealth had with the Tasmanian Government, Gunns Pty Ltd and the owners of relevant land; and (b) can details be provided of correspondence and meetings, including the parties involved, dates and the matters discussed.

1687  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—

(1) What is the policy of Australasian Correctional Management (ACM) regarding the care of children who are left unattended when their parent is, or parents are, placed in isolation units for lengthy periods.

(2) Are any ACM staff trained professional child care workers.

(3) Can the Minister clarify why one detainee was locked into an isolation cell that had to be drilled open, as shown on the ABC Four Corners program during May 2003.

(4) Why have all the Woomera DC 2000 and most of the Villawood DC 2001 medical files of the detainee Mohammad Hassan Sabbagh, who suffered a mental breakdown and has been held in detention since December 1999, disappeared.

(5) (a) What is the ratio of staff to detainees in all centres; and (b) is this ratio uniform.

(6) What does the Minister propose to do with the long-term detainees who cannot be returned to their country of birth, for example, stateless Kuwaitis.

(7) Given that the Government has been unable to deport the detainee Hassan Sabbagh, who has been held for more than three and a half years, to Iraq, why can he not be released into the care of willing community support groups, such as the Jesuit Refugee Services or the Uniting Church, rather than burdening the taxpayer unnecessarily.

1697  Senator Bishop: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) With reference to the discussion and recommendations of the March 1999 Review of Military Compensation by Mr N Tanzer AO, what progress has been made on the development of a premium-based model for the Australian Defence Force (ADF).

(2) What is the current estimated liability of the Military Compensation Scheme.

(3) For each of the past 3 years, what total sum has been paid by way of: (a) lump sums for permanent impairment; and (b) incapacity payments to current and discharged personnel.

(4) For each of the past 3 years: (a) what total sum has been paid under Defence Act Determinations; and (b) to how many recipients.

(5) How many ADF personnel have died as a result of service-related injuries in each of the past 3 years.

(6) What claims, by injury group, for compensation by ADF personnel deployed to the Iraq operations during 2003 have been: (a) made; and (b) accepted; under the Military Compensation Scheme.

(6) What claims, by injury group, for compensation by ADF personnel deployed to the Iraq operations during 2003 have been: (a) made; and (b) accepted; under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986.