Anthony Albanese says ‘no impediment’ to Biloela family staying

Anthony Albanese has responded to questions on whether an asylum seeker family freed from detention can finally call Australia home forever.Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has said he sees “no impediment” to the Nadesalingam family settling in Australia permanently after they were welcomed back home in Biloela this week. Nades Murugappan, his wife Priya Nadaraja and daughters, Kopika and Tharnicaa, have been living in detention for the last four years after being taken from their home in the middle of the night by border force officers in 2018. The Tamil family had become a loved part of the Biloela community in central Queensland, where they had been living and working on bridging visas, but were taken into immigration detention when their visas expired in 2018.Since then, there has been years of legal battles, detention and community campaigning to return them to the Queensland town they made their home.The family said they would face persecution if deported to Sri Lanka, but the previous federal government found they did not meet refugee requirements. However the new Albanese government intervened in the case to enable the family’s return to Biloela.“It was heartening to see the family returned home to Biloela yesterday,” Mr Albanese told reporters on Saturday.“They received a welcome from a town that wanted them home.”The family was welcomed back on Friday with a massive celebration which coincided with the town’s annual multicultural festival.“The youngest girl will celebrate her fifth birthday this weekend and it will be the first she has celebrated not in detention,” Mr Albanese added.“We’re a better country than that. We can do better than that. My government will do better than that.“In terms of that town of Biloela as well, Nades works at the meatworks. We have this massive skill shortage in this country where you have a problem in getting people to work at meatworks and for them to operate. Here we have someone who was doing that job, paying Australian taxes, making a contribution, had these two young daughters and I think that it is something that is a good day and was welcomed by that local community.”Home to Bilo campaigner and family friend Angela Fredericks is now turning her attention to getting the family approved for a permanent residency so they can call Biloela home indefinitely. “I see no impediment to that occurring,” Mr Albanese said. The family are currently on bridging visas and will need to undergo a formal application process to obtain permanent residency.“Those processes will take place,” the prime minister said. Originally published as Prime Minister Anthony Albanese sees ‘no impediment’ to Biloela family staying in AustraliaRead related topics:Anthony Albanese