Canberra determined not to ‘import trouble’ via refugee intake

Canberra determined not to ‘import trouble’ via refugee intake, by Greg Sheridan.

The Turnbull government has undertaken a series of policy steps to minimise the number of Middle Eastern Muslims, especially young men, who can come permanently to Australia.

It has done so without breaching Australia’s long-standing ­racially non-discriminatory immigration program. It has also done so without any minister or representative making any statement that could remotely be ­described as anti-Muslim. …

Sources tell The Australian the special provision of 12,000 extra people to be taken from Syria will comprise a majority of Christians. Much of the non-Christian ­remainder will be from other persecuted, non-Muslim ­minorities, including Yazidis, Druze and ­Zoroastrians. The Sunni Muslims who are included will comprise in part of Kurds, fierce opponents of Islamist extremism.

The government is able to make these decisions because what is commonly called Australia’s refugee intake — which will rise to just under 19,000 in 2018-19 — is actually a humanitarian and refugee program. This means Canberra can choose people on the basis of its ­assessment of their needs, rather than UNHCR’s, and it can also give some weight to the likely ability of the people involved to settle constructively inside Australia.

The bureaucracy has enormous latitude in many matters, and can find better solutions if it wants to.

The determination to prioritise persecuted ­minorities met some stiff resistance from mid-levels of the bureaucracy. It has also been criticised by some officials of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, because the UNHCR wants to ­determine who has priority for resettlement, whereas Canberra is determined to keep the power to choose within its own hands.

The Soros-inspired global elite demand to be able to tell us how to run our affairs, and typically enough the mid-level bureaucrats from the PC herd are on their side. Congratulations to the senior bureaucrats for putting Australia’s interests first.