Australia: Give Christian & Religious minorities special assistance in seeking asylum
A genocide is happening around the world.
Specifically, the genocide of Christians is happening around the world. At the hands of Islamic militants.
To that end, in an extraordinary show of internal consensus, the EU Parliament just voted to declare as genocide, the murderous pattern of killing Christians and other religious minorities in the Syrian conflict and in Iraq.
But, in a surprising policy U-turn, the Liberal Government, under Malcolm Turnbull, have decided not to give these Christians and other religious minorities (as distinct from the Muslim majority) special assistance in seeking asylum in Australia.
As Australia has committed to accepting 12,000 new refugees from the Syrian conflict, this policy goes against common sense, as these persecuted Christians, and other minorities, are the most in need of assistance.
As many reports have confirmed, proportionately speaking, Christians are about 2.5-3 times more likely to be refugees in the Syrian conflict than their normal proportion of the Syrian population would dictate. Indeed, the regular Christian population of Syria is 10%, which amounts to about 2 Million people out of the total population of the country. But, right now, there are reported to be about 1.3 Million Christian refugees from the conflict, out of a total refugee population of about 4 Million.
In plain English, what this means is that Christians and other religious minorities are bearing the brunt of this brutal pogrom.
However, as also reported, Christians are also less likely to avail of the official UN refugee camps, as they are afraid of being attacked by some of their hardline Muslim (often, Sunni) neighbours.
Christians simply don't feel safe in the UN camps. And, moreover, they do not feel safe where they came from; otherwise, they wouldn't be seeking refuge. They are minorities in places where Christians have been forced, by IS, to leave under threat, to pay the Jizya tax (a special, punitive tax imposed on non-Muslims for their different religious beliefs), or to convert to Islam.
This is totally unacceptable.
And, the Australian Government should give special assistance to Christian and other religious minorities where intake of refugees from the Syrian conflict is concerned, simply because that is where the need is greatest.
This Endeavour Forum petition asks the Turnbull Government to reinstate the policy of the Abbott Administration, which would give Christians and other minorities special status in seeking asylum in Australia.
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Christian and other religious-minority refugees deserve special treatment