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George Pell, an Australian cardinal who was the Vatican’s chief financial officer and an adviser to Pope Francis, was sentenced to six years in prison on March 13, for molesting two boys after Sunday Mass in 1996.

The cardinal was convicted on five counts in December, making him the most senior Catholic official — and the first bishop — to be found guilty in a criminal court for sexually abusing minors, according to BishopAccountability.org, which tracks cases of sexual abuse by...

Cardinal George Pell has been found guilty of sexual offences in Australia, making him the highest-ranking Catholic figure to receive such a conviction.

Pell abused two choir boys in the rooms of a Melbourne cathedral in 1996, a jury found. He had pleaded not guilty.

The verdict was handed down in December, but it could not be reported until now due to legal reasons.

Pell is due to face sentencing hearings from Wednesday. He has lodged an appeal against his conviction....

The Australian government said that it would reopen a mothballed island detention camp in anticipation of a new wave of asylum seekers arriving by boat after Parliament passed legislation that would give sick asylum seekers easier access to mainland hospitals.

The Christmas Island immigration detention camp, south of Jakarta, Indonesia, was a favorite target of people smugglers who brought asylum seekers from Asia, Africa and the Middle East in rickety boats from Indonesian ports...

Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison is campaigning to block a bill that would let sick asylum seekers in offshore centres get treatment in Australia.

Mr Morrison said the bill would "take control from the government", and "unleash a world of woe".

Australia has sent asylum seekers who arrive by boat to detention centres on the Pacific islands of Nauru and Manus.

Its tough immigration policy has been repeatedly criticised.

"The problem with the bill is it...

Asylum seekers and refugees are waiting as long as five years for specialist medical treatment even when it has been formally recommended by the Australian government’s contracted doctors, new data has revealed.

Support workers and medical groups have accused the government of maintaining a “dangerous and sometimes fatal” system of care on Manus Island and Nauru, as MPs prepare to vote on a medical transfers bill which could see up to 1,000 people access long-awaited treatment within...

Australian Cardinal George Pell has been convicted of sexual misconduct, becoming the highest-ranking Vatican official to be found guilty of such a crime.

Pell's trial and all details involving the accusations against the Vatican treasurer were covered by a court-issued gag order, which forbade all media in Australia from reporting on it.

The conviction was first reported by the Daily Beast, an online news and opinion site, which said the charges stemmed from the abuse of two...

There have been more than 27 suicide attempts in the last two weeks by refugees detained on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island, a refugee says.

Abdul Aziz Muhamat has called for action to resolve the mental health crisis from the Australian parliament, which is considering a bill to ease the transfer of sick refugees from Manus and Nauru to Australia.

Mr Muhamat said the crisis among about 600 men in exile on Manus was spiralling out of control.

"As someone who has been on...

The Morrison government is insisting none of the children or their families transferred from Nauru to Australia in recent weeks will be allowed to stay in Australia. 

Home Affairs minister Peter Dutton confirmed the children were only being transferred to Australia for temporary medical care and would not be allowed to stay.

That's in line with a long-held policy, also supported by Labor, that no asylum seekers who come by boat will ever be granted permanent residency. 

...

Australia will consider recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital and moving its embassy there from Tel Aviv, Prime Minister Scott Morrison says.

If acted upon, the move would follow a recent policy shift by the US that has drawn criticism internationally.

Mr Morrison said Australia remained committed to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Political opponents said Mr Morrison's comments were a "deceitful" ploy for votes ahead of a crucial by-...

Australia plans to restrict some new migrants from living in its largest cities - Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane - for “at least a few years” in an effort to ease urban congestion, a government minister said on October 9.

With immigration expected to be an issue in the next election, the plan aims to help ease infrastructure problems in cities struggling with population pressures. Critics worry the proposed new visa rules could lead to labor shortages.

Nearly 70 percent of the...

Abdullah Qaiser says he came to Newcastle from Pakistan last year to study in a secure environment.

The 21-year-old had his nose smashed by a man wearing a knuckle duster after his car was stopped at the University of Newcastle’s Callaghan campus.

More than two months have passed since Abdullah Qaiser was attacked at night by a group of young people.

While driving through the university campus, the 21-year-old international student's car was stopped by a group of around...

They’ve come from as far as Iran and Afghanistan, Somalia and Myanmar.

But the children are now stuck on Nauru, a desolate island in the South Pacific that’s little more than eight miles square. They’re caught in a strict Australian immigration system that has left them stranded.

Some of them have become so depressed after years of living in limbo that they have lost their will to live, those working with them say.

About 100 children live on Nauru, one of the remote...

An Australian newspaper has defended its decision to publish a provocative cartoon of the tennis star Serena Williams, using the image again — this time on its front page — and railing against “politically correct” critics who deemed the drawing racist.

The headline “Welcome to PC World” — accompanied by caricatures of Ms. Williams, Australian politicians, President Trump and Kim Jong-un of North Korea — was displayed on the front of the print edition of Tuesday evening’s Herald Sun,...

Australia's prime minister and politicians from across the political spectrum on 15 Aug. condemned a speech by a freshman senator calling for only white immigration and a "final solution" to end Muslim immigration. 

Senator Fraser Anning used his first speech in parliament on Tuesday to call for a return to a "White Australia" immigration policy that reflects the "European Christian composition of society," echoing a policy that barred people of non-European descent from immigrating....

An Australian archbishop has been sentenced to one year detention for concealing historical sexual abuse, becoming the highest-ranking Catholic clergyman to face confinement for a cover-up.

Archbishop Philip Wilson, who has stepped aside but not resigned from his position in the Catholic Church, was sentenced to 12 months detention on Tuesday.

A court had found him guilty of covering up the sexual abuse of children by paedophile priest Jim Fletcher in May, which he allegedly...