SYDNEY: The Australian government on Wednesday caved in and granted visas to the mother and brother of a dying Pakistani man after being accused of “a callous decision” condemning him to a lonely death.
Hassan Asif, a 25-year-old who came to Australia on a student visa, has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and told he has just weeks to live. His mother and brother wanted to be with him in his final days, but they were refused visas as they were considered at risk of overstaying.
But the decision sparked an outcry with the Melbourne City Mission homeless refuge, which is caring for Asif, urging Immigration Minister Peter Dutton to “show some compassion.”
Dutton, holding a press conference on Wednesday afternoon, said it was the “right decision” to refuse the visas based on the information that was provided. But within half an hour he had changed his mind.