asylum seekers

Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa announced radical plans to support asylum-seekers and stateless people. Ecuador’s socialist government is proposing a new law to make all migrants legal in the country. Correa said during his weekly address: “The right to migrate is guaranteed in the rules. No human being will be considered illegal.”
In 1939, as Europe stood on the verge of all-out war, Nazi Germany, true to their promise, had issued and implemented 400 different decrees for the regulation of the public and private lives of Jews. Their properties were confiscated, and their businesses and synagogues were burned down. These laws effectively purged Jews from schools, academia, business and public life, and declared them “undesirables”. Many Jews were forced to seek asylum in other Western countries.
If you listen to most Western politicians you could be forgiven for thinking that refugees are a pesky annoyance, greedy “economic refugees” from the Third World illegitimately trying to break into this wealthy country. Their now monotonously routine scapegoating of refugees for the pain and insecurity that more and more people feel, even in the richest countries in the world, translates into plain abuse out there in the public.
Newcastle based group Hunter Asylum Seeker Advocacy (HASA) held a successful fundraiser for the asylum seekers who have been given so-called 'residency' on Nauru. Earlier this year one of the asylum seekers had opened up a Pakistani restaurant in Nauru. HASA asked The Love Tree Cafe in Newcastle if they could host a solidarity dinner there, following the recipes of the Pakistani restaurant. To their astonishment, The Love Tree not only agreed to do it, but did so gratis. Staff volunteered their time, and the venue and food were provided free to maximise the returns.
A 23 year-old Iranian asylum seeker has been savagely attacked on Nauru. The young woman had been on day-release from the detention centre on May 16, visiting refugees in the community. She was expected back at 5pm so at 4.30pm she left the house she was visiting to catch the bus back to the detention centre. She never arrived. At about 8pm Nauruan police were seen wrapping the woman in a blanket and trying to place her in a police car. She had been found naked, distressed and disoriented.
On May 14 a group of 10 asylum seekers and their families began a case in the High Court challenging the legality of the government’s policy of offshore detention. The Human Rights Law Centre is running the case on behalf of the asylum seekers. The Centre’s Director of Legal Advocacy Daniel Webb, who is part of the legal team representing the families, said the group has been temporarily returned to Australia but are facing imminent removal back to Nauru.
“Too many people have already lost their lives in the Mediterranean sea, more than a thousand this week, which is a major crime against humanity,” The Party of the European Left (EL) said in a April 20 statement. “We need to stop it immediately!” The EL, a group made up of left-wing parties from across Europe, said: “We reject any attempt to solve the so-called 'migration problem' by an increased militarisation.”
Moreland city council in Melbourne unanimously passed a motion opposing the closure of remote Aboriginal communities by the Western Australian government. The council will write to federal Minister for Indigenous Affairs Nigel Scullion, WA Premier Colin Barnett and local federal ministers and Victorian senators in protest. It will also send a letter of solidarity to the Aboriginal communities under threat of forced closure.
The power to “play God” with the lives of asylum seekers was granted to Australia’s immigration minister by the passage of the most punitive refugee laws ever seen last December. Former immigration minister Scott Morrison, who held refugee children to ransom to pressure recalcitrant senators to concede their votes, pushed through the laws.

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