Nayla Rush, a senior researcher at the Center and author of the report said, "Convincing the U.S. to take Australia's unwanted asylum seekers would be a great achievement for Australia, but one of America's worst deals."
Although negotiations between the two governments were ongoing for months, President Obama did not announce the agreement until just a few days after the U.S. presidential election. Australia is unwilling to take the detainees as the nation follows a policy of mandatory and indefinite detention of unlawful noncitizens, including asylum seekers.
View the entire report at: http://cis.org/rush/australias-unwanted-asylum-seekers-mostly-iranians-be-resettled-us
The detainees were offered the opportunity to return home or to resettle in Cambodia. To encourage resettlement to Cambodia, Australia offered cash incentives of $15,000 per person and promises of family reunification with the same cash amount given to these family members. Five refugees accepted the offer.
Rush writes, "The refugee resettlement program is not about 'picking and choosing' one's resettlement country. Resettlement, by definition, is to be implemented when no other viable option is available. Cambodia (or other countries) might not be ideal for asylum seekers trying to reach Australia and family members already settled there. But America is no consolation prize either."
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/will-the-us-take-australias-unwanted-asylum-seekers-300401951.html
SOURCE Center for Immigration Studies