Rachel Evans

Two Chinese detainees have been on hunger strike in the Villawood detention centre for more than 40 days. During that time, an asylum seeker in Stage One has stabbed himself. His condition is deteriorating.
Ali Humanyun, a Pakistani queer refugee seeking asylum in Australia, has been incarcerated inside the Villawood detention centre for two years and four months. He was refused a Protection (Class XA) Visa in May 2006 and rejected by the Refugee Review Tribunal (RRT) in October. Humanyun was not granted legal aid for a Federal Magistrates Court appearance, and so the RRT’s decision was upheld on February 19.
Tayad is the Association of Solidarity with the Families of Prisoners and is part of the Front for Rights and Liberties (HOC) in Turkey. Both organisations were instrumental in supporting Turkish “death fasters”, who recently had a significant victory against the abusive regime. Green Left Weekly’s Rachel Evans spoke to Mesut Eroksuz, an Australian representative of Tayad.
Tayad is the Association of Solidarity with the Families of Prisoners and is part of the Front for Rights and Liberties (HOC) in Turkey. Both organisations were instrumental in supporting Turkish “death fasters”, who recently had a significant victory against the abusive regime. Green Left Weekly’s Rachel Evans spoke to Mesut Eroksuz, an Australian representative of Tayad.
The federal Coalition government is proposing to bar the entry to Australia of migrants and refugees with HIV, supposedly to contain HIV rates.
Refugee-rights groups have accused immigration department and GSL management at the Villawood detention centre of collective punishment of detainees in the aftermath of two detainees escaping on the evening of April 19.
A hunger strike of 35 detainees in the Villawood immigration detention centre was initiated on March 28, sparked by the actions of Global Solutions Ltd (GSL) guards under the instructions of the immigration department. GSL guards snatched a Chinese woman from her bed in LIMA, the single women’s compound at Villawood. Dressed only in her pyjamas, she was dragged screaming from the compound and was deported only hours later.
New Mardi Gras organisers called police to Community Action Against Homophobia’s (CAAH) peaceful banner action at Fair Day on February 18. Fair Day is the annual lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) picnic in Sydney’s massive Mardi Gras calendar.
On February 3, the Melbourne Age reported that the Howard government plans to introduce the Family Law (Same Sex Adoption) Bill to “amend the Family Law Act 1975 to indicate that adoptions by same-sex couples of children from overseas under either bilateral or multilateral arrangements will not be recognised in Australia”.
On February 2, former Guantanamo Bay detainee Mamdouh Habib launched his NSW state election campaign in the western Sydney seat of Auburn. The seat is currently held by the ALP’s Barbara Perry.
On January 11, SX News reported that the gay magazine had been barred from being provided to detainees at Sydney’s Villawood immigration detention centre.
On November 20, a meeting initiated by the NSW Greens marked Transgender Remembrance Day. Below is an abridged presentation by Rachel Evans, co-convener of Community Action Against Homophobia, National Union of Students female queer officer and NSW Socialist Alliance upper-house candidate.
On November 23, the SX News websire reported that Penrith City Library, in far western Sydney, had tentatively rejected a DVD promoting the “ex-gat movement” donated to its collection by the right-wing Christian Democratic Party.
Cuban Consul-General Nelida Hernandez told supporters on October 24 that Cuba will again ask the United Nations General Assembly on November 8 to support a motion to lift the 45-year-long economic embargo imposed by the US government on Cuba.
The last issue of Green Left Weekly published the story of gay asylum seeker Mohatar Hussein. Hussein fled homophobic persecution in Bangladesh to seek refugee status in Australia, only to be locked up in Villawood detention centre for the last two years. The Refugee Review Tribunal twice knocked back Hussein’s applications, despite having ample evidence that he had suffered persecution as an openly gay man.
Motahar Hussein is a Bangladeshi man seeking asylum in Australia. He has been languishing in the Villawood refugee detention centre for two years because the Refugee Review Tribunal (RRT) has twice refused to accept that he will face homophobic persecution if he is forced back to Bangladesh. Green Left Weekly’s Rachel Evans spoke to Hussein in Villawood.

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