As a nation composed mostly of migrants, modern Australia’s relationship with refugees and asylum seekers runs deep: through regional and global wars, famine and disaster, and economic and political upheavals. In recent years, that discussion has become increasingly polarised and fearful. Meanwhile, asylum seekers continue to suffer in conditions that most people agree are unacceptable, cruel.
Throughout all this, Australia’s challenge and policy response has made world news. Now, with Europe’s dramatic influx of refugees mostly from Syria, the question has renewed urgency – of a kind that demands answers beyond the obfuscation of politics.
Responding to a huge volume of questions on borders, refugees and migration, Geraldine Brooks, Tom Elliott, Voranai Vanijaka and Mark Colvin search for insight and progress on this charged and crucial subject in a discussion from The Interrobang: A Festival of Questions. That discussion took place in November 2015; watch it on our website.