Former deputy secretary of state Heather Higginbottom says US agreed to deal in order to relieve refugees’ suffering

The Obama administration urged Australia to change its policy of offshore detention of refugees while agreeing to accept up to 1,200 people to relieve their suffering, a former senior US official has said.

The former US deputy secretary of state Heather Higginbottom, who negotiated the deal designed to take refugees from offshore detention on Manus Island and Nauru, makes the revelation in a Time magazine article.

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