February 2008

Below is a template for a letter to the Australian Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, appealing that he use his discretionary power to allow Sheikh to stay in the country.

Note that the letter does not suggest that we know all the factors that have led to the government’s negative assessment of the Sheikh. Rather, the focus is on his right to procedural fairness – the belief that everybody in this country is entitled to a ‘fair go’.

Please adapt this letter in a way that makes it your own, but maintain the attitude of respect, believing that the Minister is concerned to see justice done.

The Hon. Chris Evans
Minister for Immigration & Citizenship
Parliament House
ACT 2600

Dear Minister,


I/We write this letter in regards to the immigration case of Sheik Mansour Leghaei, which had not been resolved over the last 11 years (his application having been lodged on the 1st November 1996).

As an Australian resident/citizen/Australian residents/citizens I am/we are concerned about the manner in which Dr. Legghaei’s case had been dealt with and the process adopted. As a person/persons who knows/know him personally/know of him and have witnessed his service and contribution to Australian community we request you to look into the case again and give him a fair hearing and a reasonable consideration of his case.

Further more we place before you our trust in Dr. Leghaei as a person who has worked towards peace, inter-religious harmony and settlement of new migrants with Australian values into the community, and do not consider him as a person who would cause any threat or disadvantage to the Australian community. On the contrary the Leghaei family had been well loved and accepted by all al who have into contact with them.

Thanking you for a favorable response to gain permanent residence

Yours Faithfully/Sincerely,


Feel free to contribute your own letter as a comment

At the Marrickville Council meeting of September 2007, the Council resolved to write to the Federal Minister of Immigration in support  of Sheikh Mansour Leghaei’s appeal to stay in the country.  The language is formal but the intent is clear.  The leaders of our community do not want the Sheikh deported.

Here’s a copy of the letter:

20 December 2007

Senator the Hon Chris Evans
Minister for Immigration and Citizenship
Parliament House

Dear Minister


At its meeting of 11 December 2007 (Item CD50, 11/07) Council resolved that:

the report be received and noted;

Council write to the Federal Government expressing Council’s support for Sheikh Mansour Leghaei as he has played an active role in our community and other communities over many years. As an important part of our community he makes great contributions and his loss to the community would be a great loss to the area.

Accordingly, Marrickville Council’s support for Sheikh Mansour Leghaei’s appeal to be able to remain in Australia with his family is drawn to your attention. 

And here’s a copy of the  relevant section of the item, referred to in the above letter: 

It should be noted that since the Forum, Sheikh Mansour Leghaei has lost a High Court appeal and is now threatened with imminent deportation. On his website (http://www.fatherdave.org) Father Dave Smith of the Holy Trinity Church at Dulwich Hill reports:

“This (situation) is astounding, as Mansour’s appeal was not over whether he is a decent citizen or not. It was simply over a point of law – ie. whether he was entitled to a fair trial – and the answer he’s been given is that because he is not an Australian citizen, he is not entitled to a fair trial! This seems simply monstrous to me, and something more appropriate to Nazi Germany than 21st Century Australia! Mansour is Iranian. Because he is Iranian, he is apparently not entitled to a fair trial! Can we imagine the outcry if the situation were reversed – if I went to Iran and was detained on suspicion of some crime, but was then told that because I was Australian I wasn’t entitled to a fair trial

Mansour has asked his friends to do no more than pray for a just outcome. I intend to do that and more. Indeed, I’m looking for support from other Christian clergy, politicians, and high profile sports people of all nationalities, religions and races to show their support for this man, who is a renowned pacifist, and a bridge-builder between our various ethnic and religious communities.”


1. the report be received and noted; and

2. Council consider any appropriate action in respect of Father Dave Smith’s comments.