4 Dec 2014

Petition to close Australia's offshore detention centres

2:36 pm on 4 December 2014

A petition with more than 100,000 signatures calling on the Australian government to close its detention centres in Papua New Guinea and Nauru will be delivered to the Senate today.

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Photo: supplied

A petition organiser from the Refugee Action Coalition, Ian Rintoul, says the government thinks being harsh on asylum seekers will earn it political brownie points.

But he says there is growing public opposition to offshore processing, the conditions at the facilities and treatment of asylum seekers.

"100,000 signatures is something we haven't seen before in terms of support for humanitarian refugee policy. I think in spite of what the government's response [is], I think it is simply more evidence that there is a growing awareness and growing community concern at the government's mistreatment of asylum seekers."

Ian Rintoul says to mark the presentation in Canberra, there will also be protests in Sydney and Brisbane.

He says this should show the government there is a nationwide movement committed to closing the centres abroad.