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Hazaras plea on failed refugee bids

Hazara protestors in front of the United Nations office in Canberra.

Hazara protestors in front of the United Nations office in Canberra. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

THE federal government has been urged to reassess the claims for refugee status of scores of asylum seekers from the Hazara ethnic minority in the light of escalating violence in Pakistan.

Many of those who attended protests in Melbourne, Canberra and Brisbane on Monday were mourning the deaths of friends and relatives in the most recent attack, in which more than 100 Hazaras, mainly women and children, died on the outskirts of Quetta last week.

Among the protesters were several whose bridging visas have either expired or are about to expire, and who face deportation after their claims for refugee status were rejected.

Pamela Curr, of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, said there were about 100 Hazaras whose claims had been rejected.

''Their cases are the same as those who were successful - people whose fathers and brothers were killed, who were driven off their land by the Taliban because they were Hazara,'' she said.

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