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Syrian air strikes: PM Abbott throws Australia onto the wrong side of history

The Australian Greens have condemned the Abbott Government's decision to commence airstrikes in Syria, warning it will worsen the refugee crisis and aggravate extremism.

"At a time when our community is desperate to show compassion to people fleeing war in Syria, Tony Abbott is dropping bombs," said Greens Leader Richard Di Natale.

"I'm so proud of the way Australians have told the government loud and clear that we are strong enough to offer protection to people seeking refuge from war.

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Greens call for genuine strength in Syrian response

The Australian Greens have today called on the Abbott Government not to mistake the use of force with showing genuine strength when it comes to helping the four million people fleeing Syria.

“Four million people are fleeing war in Syria at a time when there are record numbers of displaced people around the world. We are strong enough to give a home to 20,000 extra refugees without trading one vulnerable fleeing family for another,” said Australian Greens Leader, Dr Richard Di Natale.

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Australian Greens on Indonesian suspension of cooperation

The Australian Greens are deeply concerned about implications of the diplomatic crisis that continues with Indonesia.

"I am deeply disappointed and alarmed at the rate of deterioration in the relationship between Indonesia and Australia," Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne said.

"Australia and Indonesia should be building and deepening our friendship but instead Tony Abbott has allowed his cheap domestic politics of ‘stop the boats' to undermine the long-term interest of the nation.

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Labor lurches to the right and loses touch

Opening the Labor Party conference, Julia Gillard told her party faithful she wanted the ALP to be the party that says "yes to the future".

Yet the Prime Minister spent the next three days advocating for the resurrection of the old, tired conservative policies of John Howard. On policies covering asylum seekers, uranium and same-sex marriage, Labor's leader backed the stance of the former ultra-conservative Liberal prime minister.

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Australian Greens move on Russian anti-gay law, but major parties reject it

Australian Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has today spoken out against a bill before the St Petersburg Legislature in Russia that will criminalise public discussion of LGBTI issues.

"The bill before the St Petersburg parliament represents an appalling infringement on human rights for LGBTI people," the Greens' spokesperson for sexual orientation and gender identity said.

"The bill is being presented by the ruling party in Russia. This is a party that has some history when it comes to the persecution of LGBTI people.

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Greens’ bill to keep Indonesian children out of Australian adult prisons

The Greens will in the Senate this week introduce a bill which seeks to stop any more Indonesian children accused of people smuggling from being detained in Australian adult prisons.

"At least 34 Indonesian children have been freed by Australian courts and returned home after months of unnecessary anguish and detention," Greens' immigration and children spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

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Greens back Jakarta’s call for all Indonesian children to be released from Australian jails

The Australian Greens have today welcomed the news another Indonesian boy, Dion Domun, has been released by a Melbourne court after people smuggling charges against him were dropped.

"Children such as Dion should never be held in adult prisons, whether that's here in Australia or Indonesia or elsewhere," Greens' spokesperson for immigration and children, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

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