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Australian Government must apologise to David Hicks

Media Release
Christine Milne 23 Jan 2015

With reports that the United States Government has admitted that former Guantanamo Bay detainee David Hicks is innocent and his conviction in 2007 for providing material support for terrorism is invalid, Greens Leader Christine Milne has called for the Australian Government to apologise for its part in his wrongful imprisonment, torture and the outrageous abuses of related legal processes.

"The cruel treatment of David Hicks was shocking and disgraceful. Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Attorney-General George Brandis should immediately apologise on behalf of the Australian Government for its part in this contemptible chapter in our recent history," Senator Milne said.

"Australia's involvement in his disgraceful treatment is an item of national shame. It is time this is acknowledged and that justice is done.

"Australia failed to stand up for one of our citizens imprisoned without charge, tortured, and then wrongfully convicted and punished. Mr Hicks was abandoned. It was an outrage and remains so today.

"When my colleagues and former Senators Bob Brown and Kerry Nettle protested his treatment in the national Parliament they were mocked and condemned. Today it is the governments of Australia and the United States that must be condemned," said Senator Milne.

"The Greens and my colleague Senator Penny Wright have persistently called for an independent inquiry into the former Australian Government's role in David Hicks' detention, treatment and unfair trial. We renew that call today."

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