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Carrie Bickmore moved to tears over Syrian refugee pictures on The Project

These photos are harrowing, but need to be seen.

Heartbreaking photos of drowned Syrian refugee children have appeared on newspaper front pages and all over the internet in the past 24 hours, and The Project host Carrie Bickmore has summed up everyone’s feelings about the images.

On the show last night, Carrie welled up just talking about the pictures, the worst of which they decided not to show on air.

“I just can’t look at the photo without being so upset,” she said through tears.

“It just makes me think how lucky I am that I live in Australia and my children live in Australia, that’s what it is.”

The public are (quite rightly) calling on European politicians to do more to accept refugees fleeing war-torn Syria into their countries. Petitions have gained more than 100,000 signatures and celebrities have signed letters urging the UK to offer Syrians a safe haven.

Emma Thompson, Colin Firth and Dame Vivienne Westwood are among the A-Listers putting their names to the below:

“International consensus is growing that we need to do more to help people fleeing the violence reach safety. UNHCR have called for western countries to take 30,000 of the most vulnerable and so far 18 countries have responded by pledging resettlement places for Syrian refugees.

“We're ashamed that Britain isn't one of them, especially because the world is a long way off reaching the 30,000 minimum target set by UNHCR.

“Now is the time to step forward and play our part in delivering a global solution so that those who are most vulnerable find safety outside of the region: women at risk of sexual violence; children who have been orphaned; people who simply will not survive in the conditions in the camps on Syria's borders.

……..

“Money is no longer enough. We must provide a safe haven to the most vulnerable.”

The New York Times also launched a scathing attack on Tony Abbott and the Australian government’s treatment of asylum seekers on Thursday, fearing that Europe may adopt his hard-line approach to deal with the Syrian crisis, which they say would be “unconscionable”.

“Prime Minister Tony Abbott has overseen a ruthlessly effective effort to stop boats packed with migrants, many of them refugees, from reaching Australia’s shores. His policies have been inhumane, of dubious legality and strikingly at odds with the country’s tradition of welcoming people fleeing persecution and war,” the article reads.

“A boat captain recently reported that Australian authorities paid him $30,000 to turn back. If true, that account, which the Australian government has not disputed, would represent a violation of international laws designed to prevent human smuggling and protect asylum seekers.

“Those who have not been turned back are held at detention centres run by private contractors on nearby islands, including the tiny nation of Nauru. A report this week by an Australian Senate committee portrayed the Nauru centre as a purgatory where children are sexually abused, guards give detainees marijuana in exchange for sex and some asylum seekers are so desperate that they stitch their lips shut in an act of protest. Instead of stopping the abuses, the Australian government has sought to hide them from the world.”