Boat turn-backs. Offshore Detention. Refusal to settle groups of refugees in Australia. This triad is the 10-year-long contemporary White Australia policy of governments, Labor and Coalition. Jonathan Strauss argues for the need to step up the pressure.
Refugees and their supporters have called a major rally in Canberra on March 6 and around the country on April 2. Labor's “resolution of status” permanent visa does not go far enough, argues Jonathan Strauss.
Kurdish-Iranian activist, author and film producer Behrouz Boochani discusses his latest book and Australia's refugee detention regime.
Kurdish Iranian journalist Behrouz Boochani launched his new book at UNSW, telling a packed-out audience that thousands of refugees are still in limbo. Niko Leka reports.
The Australian Financial Review has revealed that the federal Coalition government awarded a $423 million security and cleaning contract for three Manus Island refugee detention centres to Paladin Group, a company that, at the time, was registered to a Kangaroo Island beach shack.
No Friend but the Mountains, written by Kurdish journalist and human right activist Behrouz Boochani who has been jailed on Manus Island since 2013, stands out among the genre of prison literature.
Another person who came to Australia seeking safety and security died on Manus Island on May 22. The Rohingya man is the seventh person to die on Manus Island since Labor re-established offshore detention.
The man died after jumping out of a bus — it is being reported as a suicide. Doctors for Refugees had been calling on the government to bring him here for more than a year as he suffers from epilepsy.
Iranian-Kurdish journalist and refugee Behrouz Boochani has been detained on Manus Island for almost five years. The theme of home in the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre’s campaign to Change the Policy was inspired by Behrouz, whose vision of home is “humanity”.
In 2011, in the days leading up to January 26, with Australian flags fluttering off cars and used as capes, accompanied by cartons of beer, sporting excellence as the pinnacle of Australian achievement and politicians lecturing the country on what it means to be a “proud Australian”, I left Perth.
As the tropical sun set over Manus Island detention centre on November 23, Walid Zazai wrote on Twitter for the final time that night. He reflected on the day as:
“A day of horror. A day of fear. A day I will never forget.
“I thought I’m back in Afghanistan in a war zone. There was no way to hide, just the sky.
“Friends have been beaten, have been taken by force to town centres.
“Don't know what will happen tomorrow. Remember us in your prayers.”
“This place is like a war zone,” wrote Behrouz Boochani, an Iranian journalist locked up in the Manus Island detention centre, as he exhaustedly began to describe the situation on November 2 – day 2 of the “Manus Island siege”.
Since October 31, 600 desperate men, suffering in more ways than most people can comprehend after more than four years of torture in detention, have barricaded themselves in the centre.
After more than four years of systemic torture, six deaths and the Papua New Guinea Supreme court ruling its presence unconstitutional, Manus Island detention centre and the fate of the several hundred men in it, is coming to a head.
The Australian government is ramping up its efforts to close the centre by the end of October, demolishing the centre around the several hundred men it is leaving stranded on Manus Island.
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