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Treasurer cuts overseas aid, trashes own reputation

One of the most shameful parts of the 2016 budget are the cuts to overseas aid, Greens aid and development spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said. 

“This savage cut, which has driven down Australia’s overseas aid to its lowest level ever, is further proof that Treasurer Scott Morrison cannot be trusted,” Senator Rhiannon said. 

“In his first speech in parliament Mr Morrison gave great emphasis to the value of overseas aid. He said 'the need (for aid) is not diminishing, nor can our support. It is the Australian thing to do.'"

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Budget callout on overseas aid – show some decency, reverse the cuts

On the eve of the 2016 budget the Greens have renewed their call for the Turnbull government to reverse the Abbott era cuts to overseas aid and to restore some common decency and humanity to our overseas aid commitment.

"The overseas aid cuts in the last budget were so extreme. They have brought hardship and possible death to many people in low income countries and they undermine Australia's international standing," Greens overseas aid and development spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said.

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We need more than a Band-Aid approach to help Pacific neighbours with extreme weather

Responding to the devastation Cyclone Winston brought to Fiji, the Greens have called for more humanitarian assistance for Fiji, an overall increase in aid funding and programs to rapidly decrease greenhouse gas emissions. 

‘While the $5 million aid package for Fiji announced by the Turnbull government is a start the level of devastation warrants  an injection of more aid funds to assist with food packages and emergency supplies that are desperately need,’ Senator Rhiannon said. 

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Estimates: Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee (Global Poverty Project)

Lee asks Mr Exell from the Development Policy Division in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to clarify the budget allocation for the Global Polio Eradication Initiative for the current financial year and also 2016-17.

Senator RHIANNON: I want to move on to issues to do with the Global Poverty Project. Can you confirm that at least $15 million will be allocated to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative for 2015-16?

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Estimates: Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee (Palestine)

Lee interrogates representatives from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on Australia's expenditure of aid money to Syrian refugees, Palestinian refugees in Syria, and NGOs working in Gaza following the 2014 Israeli military operations in Gaza and the West Bank.

Senator RHIANNON: Has any aid money been allocated to Syrian refugees and to Palestinian refugees in Syria?

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Estimates: Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee (DFAT training)

Lee asks the Deputy Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to give details on project management training which DFAT staff are required to complete prior to managing large aid projects.

Senator RHIANNON: ...What formal project management training are DFAT staff required to complete-including monitoring and evaluation, financial management, and anticorruption measures-prior to managing large aid projects?

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