December 5, 2016
Photo courtesy of: AUA 2016 @AINA
On Wednesday, 30 November 2016, a delegation of the Assyrian Universal Alliance (AUA) Australia Chapter met with members of the Australian Federal Parliament to raise awareness of the plight of the Assyrian people in Iraq and Syria. The Assyrian diaspora in Europe and Australia is particularly active in operations of sensibilisation directed at politicians and elected representatives.
The following article was published by the Assyrian Universal Alliance-Australia Chapter:
On Wednesday, 30 November 2016, a delegation led by Mr. Hermiz Shahen, Deputy Secretary General of the Assyrian Universal Alliance (AUA), Mr David M. David, President of the Assyrian Australian National Federation, Mrs. Suzy David, AUA senior adviser and former Deputy Secretary General, together with Mrs. Karen Bos , Vice President of Christian Faith & Freedom and Mrs Carmen Lazar manager at the Assyrian Resource Centre of the Assyrian Australian Association, held a number of meetings in the parliament house in Canberra.
The delegates were welcomed by the Hon. Chris Bowen MP, Shadow Treasurer, who organised special meetings with a number of Australian Government Officials including: Senator the Hon Penny Wong; Leader of the Opposition in the Senate and Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Richard Marles MP, Shadow Minister for Defence, and The Hon Shayne Neumann MP, Shadow Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, with the presence of Mr Chris Hayes MP, Shadow Whip.
The delegation expressed the concerns of Australian Assyrians, about the ethnic and cultural genocide perpetrated against our people in Iraq and Syria, and the future of the indigenous Assyrians of these two countries. They presented the Shadow Foreign minister with a letter and briefed the Australian officials about the battle that already started to liberate Mosul and Nineveh Plains from ISIS, the total destruction of all liberated towns and villages and the vacuum that will be created once the military operation is completed that could easily fall into civil war over who controls the region.
As a matter of the uttermost importance, the Assyrian Universal Alliance urged the Australian government to lay out a comprehensive strategy assisting the Assyrian nation’s needs in the establishment of a self-administered safe haven in Northern Iraq within federal Iraq. As well as providing training and funding to the existing Assyrian Christian militia who can protect their lands themselves.
The delegation also met separately with the Mr Tom Fleming, Senior Adviser of the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection and Mr Michael Sukkar MP, Federal Member for Deakin.
Mr Shahen thanked all the government officials for the attention given to the Assyrian plea, unrelenting commitment to the Assyrian cause and their outstanding efforts over the years in raising the Assyrian case with the Australian government.