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Loved ones set to continue journey to safety in Australia

Palestine Australia Relief and Action (PARA) is relieved to learn that cancelled visas of Palestinians fleeing the horrors of Gaza have begun to be reinstated within the last 24 hours.

PARA has been supporting people whose visas had been cancelled by the Australian Government; and were notified via email the reason for cancellation was because they believed applicants never intended to stay in Australia temporarily.

PARA has worked with the Australian Government and legal team to assist Palestinians affected by visa cancellations and make applications for revocation.

The Legal team has worked around the clock to make representations requesting the cancellations be revoked to enable stranded Palestinians to continue their journey to reunite with family in Australia.

Crucially, throughout this process there have been no security issues or concerns raised with the individuals. It has been a matter of diligently navigating established processes to address the administrative challenges faced by Palestinians leaving Gaza and seeking refuge in Australia.

At least eight of the 12 Palestinians PARA was supporting have had their temporary visas reinstated and are now recommencing their journey to Australia to be reunited with family. They are overwhelmed with relief, including Rami, a journalist from Gaza, his wife, and three children aged two, six and ten years old.

After departing Cairo and upon arrival in Istanbul, Rami and his wife were told their visas had been cancelled during transit. They were advised their children could continue the journey to Australia with their grandfather who was travelling with them, but the family refused to be separated from their children and had been stranded at the airport since.

PARA understands the government is continuing to process the remaining applications for revocation and is hopeful for a positive outcome, including for Hani, the 23-year-old nephew of an Australian citizen. Having survived Gaza and escaped, Hani is spending his fourth day in an airport in Istanbul and PARA is increasingly concerned for his safety and wellbeing.

“We are so relieved. These people followed the process they were told to, and we’re pleased the Australian Government has acknowledged that and will enable them to safely reunite with family in Australia. They have experienced unimaginable horrors in Gaza, and we want to continue working with the government to respond to these people with compassion and humanity.

Australians have led with compassion in recent days – writing letters, donating transit hotel costs, and advocating for the right of Palestinian migrants and refugees to have safety. We are so grateful for their help in getting loved ones to Australia.” Reem Borrows, PARA Board Director

For more information or interviews, please contact: info@para.org.au

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At least eight of the 12 Palestinians PARA was supporting have had their temporary visas reinstated and are now recommencing their journey to Australia to be reunited with family. They are overwhelmed with relief, including Rami, a journalist from Gaza, his wife, and three children aged two, six and ten years old.
The Palestinian-Australian community has expressed anger and frustration this week, multiple instances emerge of family members having their visas cancelled en route to Australia. Palestine Australia Relief and Action (PARA) is deeply concerned and seeking urgent clarification as to why some visa cancellations are occurring, leaving Australian family members devastated as their loved ones are being flown back to Egypt or denied departure all together.
According to non-profit organisation Palestine Australia Relief and Action (PARA), Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade recently emailed letters to hundreds of Australian citizens who registered their family members in Gaza for consular assistance.