The Abbott government is likely to prioritise people of the Christian faith when resettling Syrian refugees in Australia.
The ABC reports there is a clear message circulating the Coalition: “No more Muslim men”. This comes as pressure mounts on prime minister Tony Abbott to increase this year’s humanitarian intake of 13,750 people.
Other government ministers, like Malcolm Turnbull, have also said more Syrian Christians should be accepted.
“They are a minority, they survived in Syria, they’ve been there for thousands of years, literally since the time of Christ,” he said.
“But in an increasingly sectarian Middle East, you have to ask whether the, the gaps, the spaces that they were able to live and survive in will any longer be available.”
In this morning’s party room meeting, Coalition MPs raised the possibility of fast-tracking a planned increase in the number of refugees it accepts to 18,750, which according to current policy is not due until 2018.
Immigration Minister Peter Dutton, who is in Europe to discuss Australia’s role in resolving the crisis, is expected to brief the national security committee tonight.
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