Tampa Day rallies

September 7, 2005

Chris Kerr & Jim McIlroy, Brisbane

On August 27, 300 people rallied in Roma Street Forum for Tampa Day and marched across the Brisbane River to the Queensland College of Art.

The protest, sponsored by the Refugee Action Collective and Amnesty International, was part of a national weekend of action to mark four years since the federal government's infamous seizure of the Norwegian vessel the MV Tampa.

Chaman Sha, a refugee from Afghanistan and former detainee on Nauru, said that it was "the refugee support struggle in Australia which gave the refugees hope". The remaining people locked up on Nauru "still need your help and support", he said.

Dave Perry from the Maritime Union of Australia, Refugee Action Collective spokesperson Ian Rintoul, Australian Democrat Senator Andrew Bartlett and Dee Hunt from the Solidarity Philippines Australia Network also spoke.

In Perth on August 28, reports Virginia Brown, refugee-rights activists used dramatic and humorous street theatre to mark the fourth anniversary of the Tampa incident. Ian Jamieson gave greetings from the Maritime Union of Australia and linked the government's attacks on refugees to its attacks on workers.

From Green Left Weekly, September 7, 2005.
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