The asylum of refugees and other foreign citizens in need has become the focus of debates and public opinion during recent years. Socio-political commentators in countries all over the world have examined the issue and provided a wide range of opinions on the subject, from those in favour of opening the doors to individuals who risk death or severe injury by remaining in their country, to those completely opposed to allocating resources to refugees and in favour of toughening the entry of new immigrants.
Traditionally, Australia has been a country that has welcomed foreigners, providing asylum to numerous refugees and asylum seekers during recent decades. It is estimated that Australia has welcomed over half a million people since the 1940's (bbc.co.uk/worldservice), providing them with the refuge and economic support that they required. Although the US and the European Union receive more asylum applications than Australia, the Australian government has strengthened their border security to prevent asylum seekers and other immigrants from illegally entering the country, receiving worldwide condemnation from a number of political institutions, including the UN, a number of different government and
human rights activists (ibid).
Commentators like Porter (2003) and Sage (2004) have analyzed this issue, providing a number on conclusions on Australia's policies on immigration. This paper will analyze the main political and social repercussions of the issue of asylum seekers, refugees and illegal immigrants in Australia.
[...] Essay on asylum seekers, refugees and illegal immigrants in Australia: Outline the socio-political consequences The asylum of refugees and other foreign citizens in need has become the focus of debates and public opinion during recent years. Socio-political commentators in countries all over the world have examined the issue and provided a wide range of opinions on the subject, from those in favour of opening the doors to individuals who risk death or severe injury by remaining in their country, to those completely opposed to allocating resources to refugees and in favour of toughening the entry of new immigrants. [...]
[...] Therefore, the blame cannot be assigned to Australia, as it has not generated the problem. Nevertheless, international agreements are needed to make sure that cooperation between nation states can tackle and minimise the negative global effects of illegal immigration. This was evidence by the Tampa Affair. International agreements are needed to prevent problems and difficulties generated by illegal immigration and avoid misunderstanding and conflict between nations like those that occurred between Australia, Indonesia and Norway during the Tampa Affair (Marr and Wilkinson, 2004), as well as to provide the necessary legal structures to tackle this global problem and its economic, social and environmental consequences. [...]
[...] Nevertheless, what the Australian government seems to ignore are the ethical consequences and economic efforts that this approach involves. Reducing illegal immigration to reduce the economic exhaustion that the arrival Of new immigrants can generate seems an adequate policy, but loses a significant part of its validity when looking at the increasing financial costs of running detention centres. In addition, the efforts on preserving and protecting Australia's interests contrasts in many occasions with the regard for the human rights of those detained. [...]
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