If we love the ANZAC spirit why are we deporting New Zealanders?

Australia deporting New Zealanders
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. (Photo: AAP)

09 April 2018

Duncan Fine – The Age

Last year, Malcolm Turnbull said Anzac Day celebrated the triumph of the human spirit and the qualities of sacrifice, courage and mateship.

And yet, when Malcolm Turnbull and Jacinda Ardern met in Sydney recently one major issue stood between them. Australia seems to delight in deporting New Zealand citizens even though some have lived virtually their whole lives here.

In the past year I have worked for the families of two New Zealand men who have died in Australian immigration detention. They had finished their prison sentences; paid their debt to society. But instead of returning home and rebuilding their lives like normal prisoners they were kept under lock and key, while awaiting deportation back to a country they did not know. One of these men committed suicide out of desperation.

This Anzac Day no doubt Turnbull and Dutton will once again wrap themselves in the flag (one that’s virtually identical to that of New Zealand) and solemnly pay lip-service to the ideals of the Diggers. But in reality they continue to callously turn their backs on the very ideals that the young men in World War One fought for… decency, freedom and comradeship.

Duncan Fine is a lawyer and Age columnist.

[Read the full Sydney Morning Herald article].

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