AFP apology to Hakeem welcome, action still needed

Amnesty International Australia welcomed Australian Federal Police chief Reece Kershaw’s apology to Hakeem al-Araibi for the time he was detained in a Thai prison.

“An apology, albeit belated, is the very least Hakeem should expect for the ordeal he and his family endured,” Amnesty International Australia campaigner Tim O’Connor said.

“It’s a welcome acknowledgement of systemic failure in the AFP and Department of Home Affairs’ processes.

“We look forward to the Department of Home Affairs also offering an apology to Hakeem and his family. The evidence we have garnered through Freedom of Information clearly shows it is the failure of Home Affairs systems and communications that led to Hakeem’s detention in Thailand.

“It is troubling that more than 10 months after these Australian Government departments failed Hakeem, that their systems are still not fixed. What happened to Hakeem could happen to someone else, which is why Australian taxpayers should receive an independent and transparent inquiry so we can all have trust in our Government’s systems.”