The Australian Government has issued a notice of intention to refuse American whistleblower Chelsea Manning’s visa request ahead of her speaking tour in the country this weekend.
The National Justice Project supports the right of Chelsea Manning to speak at events in Australia.
Principal Solicitor George Newhouse told the ABC’s AM program this morning that “any conviction that Chelsea has was commuted, and that certainly must count for something”.
Former US President Barack Obama commuted Manning’s sentence in January 2017.
Think Inc, the organiser of Manning’s tour, is asking her supporters to lobby Immigration Minister David Coleman.
“We are looking for support from relevant national bodies or individuals, especially politicians who can support Chelsea’s entry into Australia,” said Think Inc director Suzi Jamil.
“We are seeking letters of support to send to the Minister for Immigration in order for him to reconsider his decision.”
Mr Newhouse told the ABC that if an initial submission to the Immigration Minister fails, then Think Inc will have to work on an appeal, however this could take months.
“Normally you would have the right to make representations to the Minister or the Minister’s delegate about why a visa should be granted,” he said. “And then if the Minister or delegate goes on to deny the visa, there are rights of appeal in certain cases.”