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'Treatment of returnees' section of Sri Lanka 2013 report (second request)

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Dear Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade,

I am lodging a new request for documents used to compile the 2013 Sri Lankan country report. This request has already been partly fulfilled, a record of which can be found here: https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/t....

Please provide all email correspondences used to compile the 'treatment of returnees' section of the 2013 Sri Lankan country report. Please limit the request to those email correspondences between DFAT and the Sri Lankan Government, the International Organisation for Migration and the two NGOs mentioned in section 3.80 of the report.

I am also requesting email correspondences that were generated by the Department in the processing and refusal of my previous request 'Treatment of returnees' sections of Sri Lanka 2019 country report which can be found here: https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/t...

Yours faithfully,

Elias Ross

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

1 Attachment

OFFICIAL

 

Dear Mr Ross

Thank you for your email dated 22 June 2021 to the Department of Foreign
Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

We understand you are making an application under the Freedom of
Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) for access to:

“I am lodging a new request for documents used to compile the 2013 Sri
Lankan country report. This request has already been partly fulfilled, a
record of which can be found here:
[1]https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

 

Please provide all email correspondences used to compile the 'treatment of
returnees' section of the 2013 Sri Lankan country report. Please limit the
request to those email correspondences between DFAT and the Sri Lankan
Government, the International Organisation for Migration and the two NGOs
mentioned in section 3.80 of the report.

 

I am also requesting email correspondences that were generated by the
Department in the processing and refusal of my previous request ‘Treatment
of returnees’ sections Sri Lanka 2019 country report which can be found
here :
[2]https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

 

Before we commence processing your request, I would be most grateful if
you could confirm by return email:

 1. whether you agree to your request being processed as two separate
requests;
 2. that request 1 is limited to “all email correspondences used to
compile the 'treatment of returnees' section of the 2013 Sri Lankan
country report. Please limit the request to those email
correspondences between DFAT and the Sri Lankan Government, the
International Organisation for Migration and the two NGOs mentioned in
section 3.80 of the report" but does not seek “…documents used to
compile the 2013 Sri Lankan country report"; and
 3. that request 2 for correspondences generated in the processing and
refusal of your previous request previous request ‘Treatment of
returnees’ sections Sri Lanka 2019 country report relates to our
reference LEX2698.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely

DFAT FOI Team

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
[3]DFAT.GOV.AU | [4]Twitter | [5]Facebook | [6]Flickr | [7]YouTube

 

 

References

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2. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
3. http://dfat.gov.au/pages/default.aspx
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5. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
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Dear FOI,

In résponse to 1) please process as two request.

In response to 2) No. I have written 'email correspondences used to compile the 'treatment of
returnees' section of the 2013 Sri Lankan country report'. This may include documents that were used to compile the report. But please limit to the organisations mentioned.

In response to 3) LEX2698, LEX3056 & LEX3057

Yours sincerely,

Elias Ross

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

2 Attachments

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    Re Your FOI request Treatment of Returnees section of Sri Lanka 2013 report second request SEC OFFICIAL.txt

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Dear Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade,

In résponse to 1) please process as two request.

In response to 2) No. I have written 'email correspondences used to compile the 'treatment of
returnees' section of the 2013 Sri Lankan country report'. This may include documents that were used to compile the report. But please limit to the organisations mentioned.

In response to 3) LEX2698, LEX3056 & LEX3057

Yours sincerely,

Elias Ross

Yours faithfully,

Elias Ross

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

OFFICIAL

FOI Reference: LEX3981

Dear Mr Ross

Re: Freedom of Information (FOI) Request

Thank you for your e-mail dated 13 July 2021 in which you seek access under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 to:

"I am lodging a new request for documents used to compile the 2013 Sri Lankan country report. This request has already been partly fulfilled, a record of which can be found here: https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo....

Please provide all email correspondences used to compile the 'treatment of returnees' section of the 2013 Sri Lankan country report. Please limit the request to those email correspondences between DFAT and the Sri Lankan Government, the International Organisation for Migration and the two NGOs mentioned in section 3.80 of the report.

This e-mail sets out some information about how your request will be processed by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Scope of request:
Searches are now being undertaken in relevant areas of the Department for documents relevant to your request.  If it emerges that the scope of your request is unclear or is too large for processing, the Department will contact you to discuss re-scoping the request.

Timeframe for receiving our decision:
We received your request on 13 July 2021 and the 30-day statutory period for processing your request commenced from the day after that date.  You should therefore expect a decision from us by 12 August 2021.  The period of 30 days may be extended in certain circumstances, for example if the department needs to consult third parties.  We will advise you if this is required.

Charges:
Please note that the Department may issue charges for processing FOI requests.  We will advise you of any relevant charges when we are in a position to estimate the resources required to process your request.

Disclosure log:
Please note that, with some exceptions (such as personal information), documents released under the FOI Act may later be published on the department's disclosure log: https://www.dfat.gov.au/about-us/corpora...

Exclusion of officials' names and contact details:
It is the Department's policy to withhold the mobile numbers of all government officials, and the names and contact details of government officials not in the Senior Executive Service (SES) or equivalent.  If you require this information, please let us know at [DFAT request email]; otherwise we will take it that you agree to that information being excluded from the scope of your request.

Personal Information:
If we need to consult with other people or organisations regarding your FOI request, we may need to disclose your personal information (e.g. your name).  When we consult it may be apparent that you have made a request, even if we do not disclose your identity.  Please let us know if you have any concerns in this regard.  The Department's privacy policy is available at dfat.gov.au/privacy.html.

Should you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact us by return e-mail at [DFAT request email]

Yours sincerely

DFAT FOI Team

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
DFAT.GOV.AU | Twitter | Facebook | Flickr | YouTube

show quoted sections

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

OFFICIAL

FOI Reference: LEX3983

Dear Mr Ross

Re: Freedom of Information (FOI) Request

Thank you for your e-mail dated 13 July 2021 in which you seek access under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 to:

I am also requesting email correspondences that were generated by the Department in the processing and refusal of my previous requests... in LEX2698, LEX3056 and LEX3057"

This e-mail sets out some information about how your request will be processed by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Scope of request:
Searches are now being undertaken in relevant areas of the Department for documents relevant to your request.  If it emerges that the scope of your request is unclear or is too large for processing, the Department will contact you to discuss re-scoping the request.

Timeframe for receiving our decision:
We received your request on 13 July 2021 and the 30-day statutory period for processing your request commenced from the day after that date.  You should therefore expect a decision from us by 12 August 2021.  The period of 30 days may be extended in certain circumstances, for example if the department needs to consult third parties.  We will advise you if this is required.

Charges:
Please note that the Department may issue charges for processing FOI requests.  We will advise you of any relevant charges when we are in a position to estimate the resources required to process your request.

Disclosure log:
Please note that, with some exceptions (such as personal information), documents released under the FOI Act may later be published on the department's disclosure log: https://www.dfat.gov.au/about-us/corpora...

Exclusion of officials' names and contact details:
It is the Department's policy to withhold the mobile numbers of all government officials, and the names and contact details of government officials not in the Senior Executive Service (SES) or equivalent.  If you require this information, please let us know at [DFAT request email]; otherwise we will take it that you agree to that information being excluded from the scope of your request.

Personal Information:
If we need to consult with other people or organisations regarding your FOI request, we may need to disclose your personal information (e.g. your name).  When we consult it may be apparent that you have made a request, even if we do not disclose your identity.  Please let us know if you have any concerns in this regard.  The Department's privacy policy is available at dfat.gov.au/privacy.html.

Should you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact us by return e-mail at [DFAT request email]

Yours sincerely

DFAT FOI Team

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
DFAT.GOV.AU | Twitter | Facebook | Flickr | YouTube

show quoted sections

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

2 Attachments

OFFICIAL
FOI Reference: LEX3983

Dear Mr Ross

Please find attached correspondence relating to your FOI request, reference LEX3983.

Yours sincerely

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
T +61 2 6261 1111 | E [DFAT request email]
DFAT.GOV.AU | Twitter | Facebook | Flickr | YouTube

show quoted sections

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

1 Attachment

OFFICIAL
FOI Reference: LEX3981

Dear Mr Ross

Please find attached correspondence relating to your FOI request, reference LEX3981.

Yours sincerely

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
T +61 2 6261 1111 | E [DFAT request email]
DFAT.GOV.AU | Twitter | Facebook | Flickr | YouTube

show quoted sections

Dear FOI,

I am writing in response to replies to two of my requests, LEX3981 and LEX3983

With regards to LEX3983 and the practical refusal notice, please revise the request to exclude all attachments. I only request the email correspondences that were generated by the Department in the processing and refusal of my previous request ‘Treatment of returnees’ sections Sri Lanka 2019 country report in LEX2698, LEX3056 and LEX3057, not the attachments that accompany them.

With regards to LEX3981, I would like to contend the charge on both the grounds that the payment of the fee or a part of the fee would cause you financial hardship; and that the giving of access to documents relevant to your request is in the general public interest or in the interest of a substantial section of the public. With respect to the first, I am a recipient of a commonwealth support payment. WIth regards to the second, it is important for the public to know how DFAT collects information about Sri Lanka and the people the Australian government returns because of our obligations under international law to not return people to Sri Lanka if they face danger.

Yours sincerely,

Elias Ross

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

OFFICIAL
Dear Mr Ross

Thank you for your email.

LEX3983

In respect of LEX3983, we will review your revised request and respond shortly.

In the meantime, we are writing to seek your agreement to an extension of 30 days to finalise this FOI request in accordance with section 15AA of the FOI Act. If you agree to the extension, the revised due date will be Monday, 20 September 2021.

While the department has made good progress on processing this request, we are unable to meet the current timelines imposed under the FOI Act. This is because, in the context of the current COVID-19 outbreak and the and broader impact on departmental resources at this time, the department will require additional time to progress the request.

Please confirm as soon as possible today if you agree to the extension of time. We apologise for the short timeframe in this regard. If you agree to the extension, we will notify the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC).

Please be aware that if we do not receive your response, we may seek an extension of time from the OAIC under section 15AB of the FOI Act.

LEX3981

We confirm receipt of your notice of contention of the charges.

Before proceeding to a decision, we wish to make certain that your notice of contention is your complete submission in response to the charges notice. That is, that you do not wish make any further submissions in respect of the public interest contention you have raised or provide evidence (for example, a pension or concession card) in support of your assertion that the payment of the fee would cause you financial hardship.

If you do wish to make further submissions, we would be grateful if you could please do so by no later than next Friday, 27 August 2021 after which time we will proceed to a review of the charges.

Yours sincerely

DFAT FOI Team

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
DFAT.GOV.AU | Twitter | Facebook | Flickr | YouTube

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Dear FOI,

Thank you for your response.

LEX3983: I agree to the extension.

LEX3981: Please proceed with the review of charges I will not make further submissions.

Yours sincerely,

Elias Ross

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

2 Attachments

OFFICIAL

 

FOI Reference: LEX3981

 

Dear Mr Ross

 

Please find attached correspondence relating to the charges imposed for
processing your FOI request, reference LEX3981.

 

Yours sincerely

 

DFAT FOI Team

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
[1]DFAT.GOV.AU | [2]Twitter | [3]Facebook | [4]Flickr | [5]YouTube

 

 

 

 

References

Visible links
1. http://dfat.gov.au/pages/default.aspx
2. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
3. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
4. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
5. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

Rochelle Dunlop,

5 Attachments

Our reference: RQ21/02356

Agency reference: LEX3983

 

 

Mr Elias Ross

Sent by email: [1][FOI #7533 email]

Extension of time application by the Department of Foreign Affairs and
Trade

 

Dear Mr Ross

 

I write to advise that on 20 August 2021, the Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner (the OAIC) received an application from the
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (the Department) for an extension
of time to process your FOI request of 13 July 2021.

 

The Department has applied for an extension of time under s 15AB of the
Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth) because your request is considered
to be voluminous. 

·     The Department has advised the OAIC that:

−     the Department requested an extension of time from you under s 15AA
of the FOI Act, but did not receive your response (Department reference
LEX3983)

−     the statutory timeframe was suspended for a week for consultations
under s 24AB of the FOI Act. This extended the decision period to 20
August 2021.

−     the request is voluminous with over 700 pages identified within the
scope of the request

−     the Department has worked with you to narrow the scope of the
request, and

−     COVID-19 has impacted on Department resources including staff remote
working arrangements and the reallocation of staff to the Whole of
Government response.

The Department has requested an extension to 17 September 2021. I will
take any comments you may have to make into account when deciding the
application.

 

Please respond to this email by close of 26 August 2021.  If I do not
hear from you by this date, I will proceed to make a decision on the basis
of the information provided to me by the Department.

 

You will be notified of the decision once the matter has been finalised.

 

Further information about extension of time requests may be found on our
website at [2]Extensions of time.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[3][IMG]   Rochelle Dunlop  |  Review and
Investigation Advisor

Investigations and Compliance

Freedom of information
Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [4]oaic.gov.au

+61 2 9284 9783  | 
[5][email address]
[9]Subscribe [10]Subscribe to
[6]Facebook | [7]LinkedIn | [8]Twitter |   icon Information
Matters

 

 

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References

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1. mailto:[FOI #7533 email]
2. https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...
3. https://www.oaic.gov.au/
4. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
5. mailto:%[email address]
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Dear Rochelle Dunlop,

Thank you for your note. I accept the extension.

Could you also please note that I have sent payment details regarding LEX3981 through to the main DFAT FOI email address. If possible, please acknowledge their receipt by the Department

Yours sincerely,

Elias Ross

Rochelle Dunlop,

6 Attachments

Our reference: RQ21/02356

Agency reference: LEX3983

 

Mr Elias Ross

 

Sent by email: [1][FOI #7533 email]

 

Extension of time under s 15AB

 

Dear Mr Ross

 

Please find attached a decision of today’s date for an extension of time
from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

 

In relation to your below email, at this time the Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner is only considering this extension of time
application received from the Department (Department reference: LEX3983).

 

You may wish to contact the Department directly regarding your query about
Department reference: 3981.

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

[2][IMG]   Rochelle Dunlop  |  Review and
Investigation Advisor

Investigations and Compliance

Freedom of information
Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [3]oaic.gov.au

+61 2 9284 9783  | 
[4][email address]
[8]Subscribe [9]Subscribe to
[5]Facebook | [6]LinkedIn | [7]Twitter |   icon Information
Matters

 

 

 

 

 

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FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Ross

 

Thank you for submitting your payment details to continue processing this
request.

 

I confirm it is currently being processed by our accounts department. As
soon as payment is confirmed, we will recommence processing your matter.

 

In the interim, we are writing to seek your agreement to an extension of
30 days to finalise this FOI request in accordance with section 15AA of
the FOI Act. If you agree to the extension, the revised due date will be
Monday, 4 October 2021.

 

While the department has made good progress on processing this request, we
are unable to meet the current timelines imposed under the FOI Act. This
is because, in the context of the current COVID-19 outbreak and the and
broader impact on departmental resources at this time, the department will
require additional time to progress the request.

 

Please confirm as soon as possible today if you agree to the extension of
time. We apologise for the short timeframe in this regard. If you agree to
the extension, we will notify the Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner (OAIC).

 

Please be aware that if we do not receive your response, we may seek an
extension of time from the OAIC under section 15AB of the FOI Act.

 

Kind regards

 

DFAT FOI Team

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
[1]DFAT.GOV.AU | [2]Twitter | [3]Facebook | [4]Flickr | [5]YouTube

 

 

 

From: FOI
Sent: Tuesday, 24 August 2021 9:52 AM
To: Elias Ross <[FOI #7533 email]>
Subject: Your DFAT FOI - LEX3981 - Charges decision [SEC=OFFICIAL]

 

OFFICIAL

 

FOI Reference: LEX3981

 

Dear Mr Ross

 

Please find attached correspondence relating to the charges imposed for
processing your FOI request, reference LEX3981.

 

Yours sincerely

 

DFAT FOI Team

Freedom of Information and Privacy Law Section
Legal Division | Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
[6]DFAT.GOV.AU | [7]Twitter | [8]Facebook | [9]Flickr | [10]YouTube

 

 

 

 

References

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2. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
3. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
4. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
5. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
6. http://dfat.gov.au/pages/default.aspx
7. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
8. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
9. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...
10. https://aus01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

Dear FOI,

I agree to the extension

Yours sincerely,

Elias Ross

FOI, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

OFFICIAL
Thank you Mr Ross.

Kind regards
Danielle

DFAT FOI

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We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Elias Ross please sign in and let everyone know.