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Darren Chester first week at United Nations General Assembly in New York featured national security, peace and terrorism discussions
Member for Gippsland Darren Chester says high level discussions on national security, peace and terrorism have featured during his first weeks at the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
Member for Gippsland Darren Chester said Russia's invasion of Ukraine and safely repatriating women and children from camps in Syria had been major topics of discussion during briefings he had attended. "There's been a lot of focus on the security challenges facing the world, in particular the war in Ukraine, and the repatriation of Islamic State-linked families from Syria," Mr Chester said.
Member for Gippsland Darren Chester with Australia's Ambassador to the United Nations Mitch Fifield
Assess on case-by-case basis
Mr Chester said, "I attended a United Nations security seminar where Iraqi officials spoke about the nationals they are already successfully repatriating, and other countries emphasised the need to get people out of these unsafe camps.
"There are up to 50 Australian women and children who have been held in camps for more than three years. In all fairness, I believe the individuals need to be assessed on a case-by-case basis with input from the best possible security advice and a complete understanding of their situation."
Trust their assessment
Mr Chester said, "The bottom line is, these are Australian citizens and we need to rely on the advice of our national security experts, and trust their assessment of the future security risk they may pose, along with the current situation in Syria."
Mr Chester said he was continuing his work as Member for Gippsland during the weeks he was based in New York. "There's been a lot of teleconferences and emails between my offices in Traralgon and Sale as we keep up with local issues and the time differences but I'm very fortunate to have experienced local staff who are continuing to help Gippslanders with federal government issues."
Pictures from Darren Chester MP website.
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