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Australian Defence Force loses track of 65% of its Afghanistan military aid projects

The Australian Greens have called for the Minister for Defence to inquire into why the Australian Defence Force has no information about 65% of the military aid projects it has funded in the Uruzgan province, why it does not evaluate them or know if they have been subject to attack ("Defence's build and forget line cops flak in Senate", SMH today 

These revelations emerged from a Senate inquiry into Australia's aid program in Afghanistan initiated by Greens overseas aid spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon. 

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Motion: Syrian crisis

Senator RHIANNON (New South Wales) (15:30): I, and also on behalf of Senator Moore, move:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) it is 2 years since violence erupted in Syria, an estimated 70 000 people have been killed and more than 1 million have sought refuge in neighbouring countries, with an estimated 2.5 million people displaced inside Syria and an estimated 4 million people requiring humanitarian assistance,

(ii) Syria's hospitals have been damaged with a third no longer functioning and there is a shortage of medicine,

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Carr challenged on Sri Lanka visit at time of human rights abuses

Foreign Minister Bob Carr's decision to strengthen Australia's military and intelligence cooperation with the Sri Lankan government at a time when there are increasing reports of human rights abuses directly linked to the Rajapakse regime has been criticised by Australian Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon.

"I urge Minister Carr to acquaint himself with reports out of Sri Lanka that on 12 December, 17 Tamil women were admitted to a hospital in Northern Sri Lanka. There is concern that these women had been sexually abused and brutalised by the Sri Lankan military", said Senator Rhiannon.

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Motion: Human rights in Iran

Senator Rhiannon: To move—

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) with deep concern the human rights situation in Iran, including the use of the death penalty, the intimidation and arbitrary arrest of human rights and political activists, and the treatment of minorities,

(ii) with particular concern the situation of Ms Nasrin Sotoudeh, the Iranian human rights lawyer who has campaigned for ‘freedom, social security, the rule of law and justice’, and who has been imprisoned since 4 September 2010,

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