Campus hate

Coalition vows to cancel visas of antisemitic student protestors

'How much longer will Jewish students have to fear for their safety at university before the Albanese Government acts?'

Senator Sarah Henderson.
Senator Sarah Henderson.

The federal Coalition has promised to use provisions of the Migration Act to cancel the visas of student protestors found to be involved in spreading antisemitism or supporting terrorism if elected.

Under section 116 of the Act, the Ministers for Home Affairs and Immigration have significant powers to cancel the visas of any person who is or may be a risk to the health, safety or good order of the Australian community or segment of the Australian community.

In addition, section 501 of the Act gives the Ministers the power to do so if visa holders show contempt or disregard for the law or human rights, including terrorist activities and political extremism, and for vilifying a segment of the Australian community or inciting discord in Australia.

Shadow Minister for Home Affairs Senator James Paterson said, “Since October 7 we have seen multiple instances of antisemitic rhetoric and sympathy expressed for listed terrorist organisations including Hamas on campus. And yet there is no evidence the Minister for Home Affairs Clare O’Neil and Immigration Minister Andrew Giles have cancelled a single student visa under the significant powers available to them under the Migration Act.

“How much longer will Jewish students have to fear for their safety at university before the Albanese Government acts?”

Shadow Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Dan Tehan said Australia respects the democratic right to protest and free speech.

“But we will not tolerate racism, antisemitism, or the public support for a terrorist organisation like Hamas that still holds Israeli citizens as hostages and was responsible for grotesque atrocities against the Israeli people,” he said.

Shadow Minister for Education Senator Sarah Henderson said there had been “a failure of leadership” by the Albanese Government and some university authorities who have failed to combat antisemitic hate and vilification on campus.

“In the face of an alarming rise of antisemitic protests and encampments, the Coalition will do whatever is necessary to shut down antisemitism at educational institutions,” she said. “Only the Coalition is ready and willing to take the tough action required to combat this tide of antisemitic hatred and intimidation in all its forms.”

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