Law & Order

Skilled migrants to spend ‘at least a few years’ in regional Australia under Morrison’s population plan

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New population minister Alan Tudge said up to 45 percent of permanent immigrants could be diverted to visas that force them to spend “at least a few years” in regional areas, or small states like… James Elton-Pym SBS The Morrison government has promised visa reforms that will force a significant chunk of Australia’s annual intake of 190,000 permanent migrants to spend “at least a few years” in regional… The move, advocated by the Nationals and key lobby groups like the Farmers’ ... Read More »

Aged care royal commission to run for 18 months, Scott Morrison announces

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Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced the royal commission into aged care will report back to the government by April 2020 and conduct a wide-ranging investigation into the future of the… Fergus Hunter The Sydney Morning Herald The sweeping inquiry, which has now been formally established by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove, will be based in Adelaide, a focal point for concerns about the sector following accusations of severe abuse and… The commission will be led by Supreme Court Justice Joseph ... Read More »

Dutton’s airport ID checks are ripe for abuse and take us closer to a police state

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Police intelligence is far from 100% reliable and ethnic profiling is an obvious risk Rex Patrick The Guardian ”Your papers please!” It’s a phrase associated with the workings of a police state. It’s a trope favoured by Hollywood movies, but it’s an expression that can trigger dread for those who have had the misfortune to encounter the arbitrary power of an authoritarian government. And it’s a phrase you may soon hear when you arrive at one of Australia’s major airports. ... Read More »

Japan surveying border isles to protect maritime interest, security

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Japan has started surveying border-area islands, whose owners and usage often remain a mystery, to maintain its territorial waters and far-flung locations in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ). By SATOSHI OKAMOTO/ Staff Writer The Asahi Shimbun Many of these outlying islands serve as fiducial points to mark the boundaries of territorial waters and the EEZ. Government officials also hope that updated, detailed information on ownership and usage will help protect against intrusions, occupations and… Japan has the world’s sixth largest ... Read More »

Why so many businesses are behaving badly

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While we digest the royal commission’s evidence of shocking misconduct by the banks and insurance companies, there’s another unpalatable truth to swallow: they have no monopoly on bad behaviour. Ross Gittins Brisbane Times It seems almost everywhere you look you see examples of companies behaving badly. In a major speech he gave a few months ago, the chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Rod Sims, offered a remarkable list of business household names the commission was taking proceedings ... Read More »

U.S. Claims Chinese Destroyer Encounter was Unsafe

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The U.S. Navy carried out a freedom of navigation operation with the destroyer USS Decatur in the South China Sea on Sunday, with a Navy spokesperson claiming it resulted in an unsafe encounter with a… By MarEx  The Maritime Executive USS Decatur, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, sailed within 12 nautical miles of Chinese artificial islands at Gaven and Johnson Reefs in the Spratley Islands. The reefs are claimed by China, the… U.S. media outlets have quoted defense officials ... Read More »

Cooperation needed to tackle fisheries subsidies

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In July 2016, an arbitral tribunal established that China — through failing to exercise due diligence in preventing Chinese-flagged vessels fishing in various locations in the South China Sea — had violated the… Margaret Young EastAsiaForum China had not, the tribunal found, exhibited due regard for the Philippines’ sovereign rights with respect to fisheries in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ). China was also found to have breached provisions in the Convention relating to the protection of marine environment. The findings ... Read More »

What’s Going on in Brussels?

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Migration is dividing the European Union Preston Huennekens Center for Immigration Studies The European Union began in 1952 as the European Coal and Steel Community. The original six countries — Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, West Germany, and… Negotiations continue with outsiders that could see the group’s total membership rise to over 30 by 2020. Some commentators point to the E.U. as a superpower. Well-intentioned visionaries believed that increased European integration and supranational cooperation would bring prosperity, peace, and progress to ... Read More »

World Court orders U.S. to ensure Iran sanctions don’t hit humanitarian aid

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THE HAGUE (Reuters) – The World Court ordered the United States on Wednesday to ensure that sanctions against Iran, due to be tightened next month, do not affect humanitarian aid or civil aviation safety. Stephanie van den Berg Judges at the International Court Of Justice (ICJ) handed a small victory to Tehran, which had argued that sanctions imposed since May by the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump violate terms of a 1955 Treaty of Amity between the… But U.S. ... Read More »

Tanzania law punishing critics of statistics ‘deeply concerning’: World Bank

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DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) – The World Bank said it was deeply concerned about new Tanzanian legislation which would punish anyone who questions official statistics, saying the law would undermine the production of useful and… Lawmakers last month passed amendments to the Statistics Act that would impose fines, at least three years jail time, or both, on anyone who questioned the accuracy of official figures. The attorney general said the changes were needed to… Opposition groups and other critics have ... Read More »

Confrontations Shape Identity

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The question is how to get those confrontations right. A strong national identity is good, but a xenophobic backlash is not. Joergen Oerstroem Moeller * The National Interest Human beings need an identity. Together with self-respect, it forms the core of each individual’s life-explaining and shaping behavior. It is found by comparing themselves with people “on the other side of the hill.” Identity is conducive to depict those other people as enemies or opponents. The search for identity thus sows ... Read More »

Royal Commission proposed for family law system

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The Chief Justice of the Family Court says a royal commission into the family law system should be considered if the public isn’t satisfied by proposed government changes and an Australia Law Reform Commission review. Mark Schliebs The Australian Ahead of his departure as the court’s top judge later this year, Chief Justice John Pascoe used a speech at a Law Council of Australia conference on family law in Brisbane to warn about the planned shake-up of the system. “In ... Read More »

Aung San Suu Kyi’s extraordinary fall from grace

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Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s civilian leader and de facto president, is under fire from all sides. Domestically, she is facing growing criticism for stalled economic and political reforms, glacial progress on policy and service improvements, and the suppression of freedom of expression and press freedom. Authors: The Conversation But it is her international reputation that is most in tatters. The Nobel Peace Prize laureate, imprisoned for 15 years over a 21-year period in her struggle for human rights and ... Read More »

Romanian PM clashes with Commission over rule of law

Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dancila looks on during a debate on the rule of law in Romania, during a plenary session at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, eastern France on October 3, 2018. (Photo by FREDERICK FLORIN / AFP)        (Photo credit should read FREDERICK FLORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

In Parliament debate, Bucharest is warned not to follow path of Hungary and Poland. Anca Gurzu Politico Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă clashed Wednesday with a senior European commissioner over the rule of law in her country, as Brussels accused Bucharest of “moving backwards” and threatened to take action. In a debate at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Frans Timmermans, the Commission’s first vice president, cited “growing concerns” about changes to Romania’s justice system and criminal code that could threaten ... Read More »

How should we judge people for their past moral failings?

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The recent allegations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh have further divided the nation. Andrew Khoury The Conversation Among the questions the case raises are some important ethical ones. Not least among them is the question of moral responsibility for actions long since passed. Particularly in light of the #MeToo movement, which has frequently involved the unearthing of decades old wrongdoing, this question has become a pressing one. As a philosopher, I believe this ethical conundrum involves ... Read More »

Cameroon: Divisions Widen Ahead of Presidential Vote

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The risk of violence around the 7 October vote is greatest in Anglophone regions, but other parts of Cameroon could also be affected. ICG The government should take steps to curb divisive rhetoric and declare a ceasefire, even if only temporary, with Anglophone armed groups. What’s new?  Cameroon’s presidential election on 7 October comes at a tense moment. The country is torn between the fight against Boko Haram in the Far North and the Anglophone conflict in the Northwest and ... Read More »