Peter Hughes: the Australian response to the Syrian crisis

Former Immigration department deputy secretary, and now Crawford School visiting fellow, Peter Hughes has written an opinion piece for John Menadue’s blog about the one-off Syrian crisis response of an additional 12,000 permanent places for refugees. Hughes says implementation should begin quickly and be completed within the current financial year.

However, Treasury Joe Hockey now estimates it will take more than two years to implement.

Hughes recounts why Immigration accelerated the response for emergency evacuation of 4000 Kosovars from Europe to Australia during the Howard government:

“The tipping point for intervention in that crisis was television coverage of masses of Kosovars stranded on a European border, unable to return home or to move forward.

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