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Thursday, September 5, 2013

Refugees future hangs in the balance

Milad Pasalar and Reza Soltani




For the 23,000 people who arrived by boat since August, their future hangs in the balance.  The threat of Temporary Protection Visas (TPVs) is chilling.  If Tony Abbott wins the federal election on Saturday, asylum seekers on bridging visas will be placed on TPVs for three years and then re-assessed.  And for all the married men who have left their wives and children at home, they won't be able to join them because family reunion will no longer apply.

Milad Pasalar and Reza Soltani who has changed his name to John Smith, were engineers in Iran and neither is a follower of Islam. They are extremely worried about the TPVs if the conservatives win the election. They said they are not economic refugees and didn't make the perilous journey because of Australia's generous social benefits scheme, but wanted to start a family and build a new life in a free country.