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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 14 Hansard (11 December) . . Page.. 4356 ..

MR PRATT (continuing):

I pick up the comment about a refugee queue.

MR SPEAKER: I think you should stick to your amendment.

MR PRATT: Mr Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to put my case succinctly on why I think this amendment should be made.

MR HARGREAVES (11.22): This side of the house will not be supporting this amendment. We do not want to encourage the federal government to continually do anything. We want them to get on with it urgently.

MS TUCKER (11.22): I will not be supporting the amendment either. We need to urgently review it.

MS DUNDAS (11.23): The Democrats will not be supporting this amendment either. It is not just about continuing the federal government's policy on asylum seekers but urgently reviewing the current policy. As we have discussed at length this evening, there are a number of flaws in their policy that need to be fixed as a matter of extreme urgency.

Question put:

That Mr Pratt's amendment be agreed to

The Assembly voted-

 	Ayes, 6  			Noes, 9

 Mrs Cross    		Mr Berry  	Mr Quinlan
 Mrs Dunne     		Mr Corbell  	Mr Stanhope
 Mr Humphries     	Ms Dundas  	Ms Tucker
 Mr Pratt       	Ms Gallagher   
 Mr Smyth      		Mr Hargreaves   
 Mr Stefaniak    	Ms MacDonald  
Question so resolved in the negative.

Amendment negatived.

MS TUCKER (11.26): I would like to conclude the debate by dealing with a couple of concerns that have come up. Mr Pratt or someone else used the term "illegal boat people". I need to make the point quite clearly that asylum seekers are not illegal immigrants or illegal boat people. Some people arrive here without proper travel papers, with false documents or with no documents at all, and they can claim asylum as refugees. People who cannot live in safety in their own country are entitled to arrive by boat or air and apply for refugee asylum under Australian law. This is clearly stated in the UN convention on refugees, which Australia has signed, as I have already pointed out.

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