Rabat – Moroccan envoy to Canberra Karim Medrek has praised the contribution of the Moroccan community in Australia.In an interview with SBS Radio, Medrek said that there are nearly 10,000 Moroccans residing in Australia. The community is most present in Sydney and Melbourne.“There also some Moroccan families who live in small cities, such as Brisbane, and Queensland,” Medrek said. The diplomat said that “the Moroccan community is well integrated into the Australian society.”He added that most of the Moroccans living in Australia are highly educated compared to Moroccan communities in other countries.“Moroccans living in Australia are good ambassadors for Morocco and contribute to their country’s radiation,” the ambassador said.Medrek said that there are many Moroccans occupying important positions in Australia, including a doctor who teaches water resources management at the University of Western Australia.Without naming the Moroccan man,Medrek also mentioned that there is also a Moroccan businessman who leads the Arab-Australian Chamber of Commerce and contributes to the development of trade and economic relations between Australia and the Arab countries.The ambassador also mentioned a Moroccan cook who opened a Moroccan restaurant in Sydney 20 years ago.“Morocco and Moroccan culture are strongly present in Australia through Moroccan music, Moroccan cuisine, and Moroccan dress,” he said.Australian ambassador agreesMorocco and Australia maintain good diplomatic relations. Australian ambassador to Rabat Berenice Owen-Jones told Morocco World News on Thursday, August 15, that she “agrees” with the Moroccan ambassador.“I have met many Moroccans from all walks of life that are proud to call Australia home and are making a great contribution to Australian society.”She said that the number of Australians in Morocco is much smaller: a few hundred, but “the ones I have met all say how much they love it here- despite being 18000 km from their country of origin.”She added, “Each one has a unique story to tell.”Morocco and Australia maintain good diplomatic relations. Australia opened its embassy in Morocco in 2017. The opening of the embassy helped enhance cooperation between Rabat and Cannebra in several areas, including agriculture.“Australian exports comprised around AUD 40 million [MAD 272 million], mostly in wheat, meat and paints, and imports from Morocco were valued at around AUD 57 million [MAD 338 million], including fertilisers, clothing and vegetables,” the Australian envoy told Morocco World News in 2018.
UNHCR spokesperson Ron Redmond told reporters in Geneva that the agency had received confirmation that the five people were expelled on 22 August – even though they were recognized in Turkey by UNHCR under its mandate. The Iranians were sent to the Iraqi city of Erbil, where they spent almost a month in detention. The refugees have just been released. “UNHCR is concerned that no due process of law was followed prior to the expulsion and that UNHCR was not given any prior information of the authorities’ intention to expel these persons or of the expulsion itself,” Mr. Redmond said. “To forcibly send persons to Iraq’s northern governorates if they do not originate from there is contrary to UNHCR’s guidelines. The security situation in northern Iraq, although relatively calm compared to the rest of Iraq, is still tense and unpredictable.” Mr. Redmond added that unless sufficient safeguards are taken, the expulsion of refugees under the mandate of UNHCR may breach the principle of non-refoulement, which is enshrined in the 1951 UN Refugee Convention. Non-refoulement refers to the right of a refugee or asylum-seeker whose case has not yet been fully assessed to not be sent to a country where his or her life or liberty could be at risk. 21 September 2007The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said today that it has raised serious concerns with the Turkish Government about its expulsion last month of five Iranians to northern Iraq.