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Asylum-seekers inside the detention centre at Nauru (ABC News/Department of Immigration)

The St Vincent de Paul Society says it welcomes the introduction of a bill to Federal Parliament supporting the transfer to Australia of the remaining asylum-seekers in Nauru and Papua New Guinea.

ABC News reported yesterday that the Greens would introduce a bill this week, Parliament’s first sitting week of 2023, that would offer immediate evacuation to asylum-seekers and refugees who remain in Nauru and Papua New Guinea.

The bill would offer about 150 people who are still in Nauru and PNG to temporarily live in the community in Australia until they are resettled to a third country, as long as there have been no adverse security assessments made against them.

Those who are evacuated would also be provided with medical assessments and treatment as needed.

Greens senator Nick McKim said the bill had been written specifically to be consistent with Labor’s immigration platform so the Government could support it and “avoid the toxicity that has dominated refugee politics in Australia over the last decade”.

In a statement yesterday, the charity said:

“The Society, on behalf of our 45,000 members and the Vincentian Refugee Network, has long argued for offshore processing to be abolished and for people seeking asylum and refugees in PNG and Nauru to be resettled in Australia.

“In the last decade, Australia has failed to welcome or protect people who have sought asylum in our country, arriving here by boat, despite them being entitled to seek protection under international law.

“Over that time, more than 3000 people have been sent to PNG and Nauru and been forced to live in substandard conditions and experience immeasurable suffering and neglect.”


Greens push for immediate evacuation of remaining asylum seekers in Nauru and Papua New Guinea (By Jake Evans, ABC News)

Transfer of remaining people in Nauru and PNG (St Vincent de Paul Society)