Letter from a refugee — ‘We thank you for remembering us’

June 20, 2011
World refugee day rally, Sydney June 19.
World refugee day rally. Sydney, June 19. Photo: Peter Boyle

The message below was sent on June 20 — World Refugee Day — from an asylum seeker named Jaffer. Jaffer is held in Curtin detention centre in Western Australia.

* * *

We thank you all for remembering us, noticing us, for becoming our voice and raising it to the world outside of this detention and imprisonment.

We all left our countries for the fear of being killed. I personally left my country almost 18 years ago and since then seeking for the protection and asylum in different countries. This is the fourth country I have entered for the sake of protection but yet to get it.

Is not this 18 years of homelessness, neglect enough to show how desperately needy we are for protection. I mean if someone's life is not in danger why would he choose of live a life like gypsies, who is just moving here and there like a stranger in an unknown place.

Yeah I accept that we are [safe] here physically, but I guess it is not enough.

Mentally we are disturbed and isolated just thinking of our young [ones]. We all left our siblings, our pregnant wives, our old parents and families in a combat zone, in an uncertain and unstable situation for our and their safety.

Here, we are just like those smell-less flowers who is alive but without fragrance and smell. We are like alive corpses.

We do not know what are we guilty for, is it for being human or for being Aghani? Firstly, six precious months of our life were taken away from us or I must say the right of living were taken from us for six months.

Even the real criminals and culprits are better than us, at least they know what are they guilty for and how long they will be held in prison for their crimes. But we, just for being innocent, are held here for unspecified time.

We are here depressed, upset and restless just like a fish which is taken out from water and dying every minute, every second, and every moment.

Some time I feel like we are in a zoo, where animals are fed well, kept well, but they are not allowed to live with humans because they are wild and dangerous.

I have not spent a day without thinking of my family who are living in unstable and uncertain situation but what else can I do? I thought this country of yours will care about us and we would be able to live a peaceful life without discrimination, but it has not happened in almost one and a half years.

And who know if I will ever meet my family again, because the hope I had is going up in smoke.

All occasions the Eid, Christmas, Easter has flown away and now this new Easter has come and soon will leave us, but we will be here again unnoticed and ignored.

All seasons winter, summer, autumn and spring have gone, but the only season which is remained in our hearts is autumn and I wonder when the spring will take its place.


The biggest SHAME for MY generation since my dad's generation bravely fought Hitler, is to see the 64 year old brutal oppression & FORCED DISPLACEMENT of TEN MILLION Palestinians most of who ARE STILL REFUGEES TODAY, SIXTY YEARS AFTER THEIR TORTURE BEGAN. I hope anyone reading this will help maintain the global Boycott of ALL Israeli goods to help end the Apartheid, Ethnic Cleansing, OCCUPATION & Murder of unarmed non-violent Palestinian CIVILIANS. Also PLEASE don't forget to BUY PALESTINIAN - google "Palestinian produce" or in the UK & Sweden, please go to http://zaytoun.org/ PLEASE support the flotilla to Gaza and JOIN an PEACE ORGANISATION for EQUALITY & PEACE in Palestine/Israel TODAY. Otherwise WHAT will OUR children be saying about US and our appeasement of the longest lasting brutal oppression & forced displacement OF AN ENTIRE NATION, in human history.

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