Anglican church offers #refugees sanctuary from @PeterDutton_MP’s “black shirts”: @jansant reports

Churches have stepped up their campaign to end Australia’s harmful refugee policies by offering sanctuary to 267 people including 37 babies, facing imminent removal to Nauru. Refugee advocates had hoped for a change in the harsh and punitive government policies under new Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (@TurnbullMalcolm), this has not eventuated. The move will draw international attention to Australia’s inhumane refugee policies as news spreads through religious communities around the globe. In a prepared statement (full text below), The Anglican Dean of Brisbane and Chair of the Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce said: This is a hugely significant action for any Australian church to take.  Historically churches have afforded sanctuary to […]

The collected rage of Chris Kenny post-Abyan interview – @Qldaah #auspol

Analysis The Australian’s associate editor and former chief of staff to Malcolm Turnbull, Chris Kenny was the first and only journalist to be granted a visa to visit and report on the Australian asylum seeker detention centres located on the island nation of Nauru. Neither the paper or Kenny would confirm if the $8,000 application fee was paid. A storm of criticism hit Kenny when he filed a report on alleged rape victim Abyan. As abortion is illegal on Nauru, the pregnant mother had been flown to Australia for the procedure. It did not take place and Abyan was returned to Nauru. The Australian Government maintained that she told officials on Australian soil that she […]

How we talk about refugees matters: @novidados comments

It has been an extraordinary few days. Last Thursday, Immigration Minister Peter Dutton, speaking in a radio interview, accused refugees being held in Australia’s notorious detention camps of ‘running a racket’ to ‘blackmail’ the government into providing proper medical treatment for pregnant women. The next day, a chartered plane took a pregnant woman back to Nauru to avoid a court injunction. The woman, known by the pseudonym Abyan, had been brought to Australia when it emerged she had been raped and had become pregnant but was unable to have an abortion on Nauru. Only after intense lobbying from refugee advocates was she was brought to Villawood Detention Centre where she […]

Alleged abuse against #refugees outside ICC jurisdiction: @jansant reports

The International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague has declined “further analysis” of evidence included in a submission authored by Tracie Aylmer, alleging atrocities against refugees committed by members of the Australian government. The ICC said in a letter (below) dated Thursday, September 18: “the allegations appear to fall outside the jurisdiction of the Court”. The letter continued: “many serious allegations will be beyond the reach of this institution to address. I note in this regard that the ICC is designed to complement, not replace national jurisdictions. Thus, if you wish to pursue this matter further, you may consider raising it with appropriate national or international authorities”. The ICC did […]

Try stopping the bleeding hearts: @burgewords #CreatingWaves

There’s no use beating around the bush: The Abbott Government has stopped the boats. I am arts columnist for No Fibs, and I probably should be writing about the Arts. However, like many artists in Australia at the moment, I am experiencing plenty of distractions of the political kind. I find it difficult to focus on creative expression while we have thousands of innocent people locked up in Australian detention centres, their images and stories used very creatively as propaganda to prevent others following in boats from Indonesia. When I come up for air from my writing schedule, I see a nation in a state of fear. Fear about money, […]

The #SunflowerProject @stephaniedale22 comments

Australia’s political ‘solutions’ to the asylum seeker ‘problem’ are despicable. On this not enough of us agree, but we have mass enough that we ought to be able to make a difference. We march in the streets, we light candles, we share on Facebook, we sign petitions, we express our dismay when this or that news report manages to expose the horrors of life in detention centres on Nauru or Manus Island or when this or that former employee blows the whistle. Yet still absolutely nothing changes. Except for the worse. Usually around election time. What can we do? Our collective helplessness is stupid. Rather than sharing compassionate thoughts for […]