Bombs continue raining down upon Iraq and Syria
US Department of Defense [12/4/16]:
U.S. and coalition military forces continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Iraq and Syria yesterday, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.
Officials reported details of the latest strikes, noting that assessments of results are based on initial reports.
Strikes in Syria
Attack aircraft conducted four strikes in Syria:
-- Near Manbij, a strike struck a large ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL mortar system.
-- Near Mara, three strikes struck three separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed two ISIL vehicles, an ISIL tunnel entrance, two ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL improvised explosive device.
Strikes in Iraq
Fighter aircraft and rocket artillery conducted nine strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:
-- Near Hit, two strikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed 20 ISIL fighting positions, 16 ISIL heavy machine guns, four ISIL rocket-propelled grenade systems, an ISIL anti-air artillery piece and two ISIL staging areas and denied ISL access to terrain.
-- Near Mosul, four strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and two separate ISIL headquarters and destroyed an ISIL fighting position and an ISIL assembly area.
-- Near Qayyarah, a strike destroyed three ISIL machine guns and denied ISIL access to terrain.
-- Near Sinjar, two strikes destroyed an ISIL staging area and suppressed an ISIL mortar position.
Austria raises 'migrant fence' on Italian border [The Local - 12/4/16]
@MSF_Sea [12/4/16]: Hamad is 5 weeks old & from Syria. He survived the sea to get stuck in a camp in #Greece. What will his future hold?
Bulgarian vigilantes filmed tying up migrants [BBC - 11/4/16]
@ItalianNavy [12/4/16]: #SAR nave Cigala Fulgosi #MarinaMilitare ha soccorso nella notte 2 gommoni recuperando 244 #migranti ...
How many refugee boats did the Australian navy push back and/or abandon in the last 24 hours? Why aren't the media, Greens and human rights groups asking? ---> @guardiacostiera [11/4/16]: #NaveDiciotti #GuardiaCostiera Italiana salva 740 #migranti in 2 operazioni #SAR #CanalediSicilia
Italy rescues 1,850 Libyan migrants off Sicily [RTE - 11/4/16]:
The Italian coastguard has rescued 1,850 migrants in eight operations in the Strait of Sicily, as a wave of boats departing from the Libyan coast intensifies.
Two small boats carrying a total of 740 people were intercepted by a coastguard ship, while an Italian Navy vessel came to the aid of two inflatable dinghies with 255 people on board, a coastguard statement said.
A merchant ship was diverted to help another 117 people, while an EU naval force vessel picked up 738 migrants trying to cross on two barges and a small boat.
According to UN refugee agency data at the end of March, some 17,500 people have arrived in Italy since the start of the year.
Two weeks ago nearly 1,600 migrants were rescued in the same area, adding to fears that calmer seas at the onset of spring are encouraging greater numbers of migrants to attempt the perilous crossing after a winter lull.
There are also concerns that European efforts to shut down the migrant sea crossing from Turkey to Greece will encourage more people to attempt the more dangerous Mediterranean passage from Libya to Italy.
Three years in detention!
Shame on you! Shame on you!
Day 24 of ongoing protests by refugee families at the Australian government's refugee camp on Nauru. The refugees are calling on people in Australia to protest too. [VIDEO - Insurrection News - 12/4/16]
Day 24 of protests by #refugees at the Australian govt's refugee camp on #Nauru. #RefugeeStruggle #CloseTheCamps
Image: @InsurrectNews [12/4/16]
Suspended Nauru opposition MPs seek international help with their legal costs [RNZI - 12/4/16]
China slams G7 statement on maritime disputes [Channel News Asia - 12/4/16]
Japan prepares for release of tritium from Fukushima plant [Japan Today - 12/4/16]
Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is still having difficulty in getting access to legal documents to prepare his case seeking a royal pardon, according to lawyer Latheefa Koya.
Anwar has filed his application at a High Court for leave to initiate judicial review proceedings to compel the Pardons Board to review its decision not to grant him a royal pardon over his sodomy conviction.
On Tuesday, Anwar, who is acting for himself, told High Court judge Justice Nor Bee Ariffin that he did not receive written submissions from the Senior Federal Counsel (SFC) and was unable to prepare his arguments for the leave application, said Latheefa, who is Anwar's family's counsel on Tuesday here. ... [The Star - 12/4/16]
An indigenous community in northern Canada has declared a state of emergency after 11 people attempted to take their own lives in one day.
The Attawapiskat First Nation in Ontario saw 28 suicide attempts in March and more than 100 since last September, Canadian media said, with one person reported to have died. ... [BBC - 11/4/16]
POLL: Should there be a ban on stupid polls about whether or not to climb Uluru?
We ran round #Uluru this morning kids are going in the helicopter in about an hour but don't know it yet...
Image: @tim_wess [12/4/16]
@tim_wess [12/4/16]: People climbing Uluru not heeding the cultural request not to. Sad.
NT fracking debate 'life or death', pastoralist tells Senate inquiry [Nine MSN - 12/4/16]
Have these dickheads never heard of John Dawkins? ---> Queensland Greens publicise tomorrow's [13/4/16] pro ALP rally in Brisbane's King George Square.
... Everything goes on, just the same ...
'From St Kilda to Kings Cross', Paul Kelly 
Culture Always Builds on the Past: RiP A Remix Manifesto
ABC - Enough Rope [5/7/04]:
... PAUL KELLY: Yeah, I think that's... You know, that's the way that I think most people write. I think probably every songwriter would have those songs that... You learn songs by... You learn how to write songs by copying other people, and, you know, you fall in love with a particular song or a songwriter and, you know, I guess it's a form of worship. You just soak them up and you work out their songs. And then they end up... You take them inside yourself. And then, you know, maybe 20 years later they pop out, and you've got to go and check. ...
(Suppressed police station CCTV footage) ... She was dragged around like a dead kangaroo ... chucked in the paddy wagon ... [ABC - Law Report - 12/4/16]:
The Coronial inquest into the death of Ms Dhu, a Yamatji woman from Western Australia is in its final stages.
In 2014, the 22 year old was pronounced dead at the Hedland Health Campus, 45 hours after being taken into police custody for unpaid fines.
She is one of an increasing number of Aboriginal Australians incarcerated for minor offences that would not normally attract criminal sanctions.
This week marks twenty five years since the release of the Royal Commission into Black Deaths in Custody.
In 1992, one in seven of Australia's prison population were indigenous.
Twenty five years later, current available statistics say one in three prisoners are Aboriginal Australian.
There are approximately 60 cinema screens on the Gold Coast. And NOT ONE for 'Where To Invade Next?'
As with the Academy Award winning 'CitizenFour', Gold Coast residents will have to travel to Brisbane or Murwillumbah if they wish to see Michael Moore's latest documentary.
Any films, book launches, lectures or talks critiquing US imperialism, war, Australian foreign (and refugee) policy are routinely suppressed on the Gold Coast. This is censorship.
Cancelled at the last minute ---> Author Robin de Crespigny to speak at Southport Library
Start Time: 10:00 AM
End Time: 11:00 AM
Meet the author of The People Smuggler, the true story of an Iraqi refugee, Ali Al Jenabi, who became a people smuggler to save his family, and ultimately came to be seen not as a criminal, but as the "Oskar Schindler of Asia".
Washington's great game and why it's failing, Alfred McCoy [TomDispatch.com - 7/6/15]
Lady Liberty arrested at the Capitol. #DemocracySpring
Image: @aletweetsnews [11/4/16]
100s arrested at Democracy Spring protests in Washington DC [AlterNet - 11/4/16]
Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump lashed out at what he called the party's "rigged" delegate selection rules on Monday after rival Ted Cruz swept all of Colorado's 34 delegates over the weekend. ... [Reuters - 11/4/16]
Black Lives Matter vs LAPD: Are police unfairly targeting and surveilling the movement? [Democracy Now - 11/4/16]
Black Lives Matter Activist: Bill Clinton's defense of "superpredator" policies dehumanizes us [Democracy Now - 11/4/16]:
... AMY GOODMAN: And yet, in this election, as a number of newspapers point out, no group has been more loyal to Hillary Clinton than the African-American community.
MELINA ABDULLAH: Well, I think the black political class has lined up behind Hillary Clinton, because they see neoliberalism as an alternative to Trump. Right? But the truth is, we really need to kind of think and be more imaginative. We really need to think about what do we really want, not just what do we not want. So we know we absolutely don’t want a Trump, but it doesn’t mean that Hillary or neoliberalism, as a kinder, gentler face on oppression, is good for communities, either.
And so it’s really important that we understand that we can move things forward by engaging in work on the ground. And so, the last time that I was with you, we talked about how Black Lives Matter is not endorsing any political candidate. And I think that what’s happening around Clinton, the Clintons, and what’s happening just in terms of what’s kind of bubbling up from the two-party system is an indicator of why we’re not endorsing any of the candidates, including Clinton. And I think that what we’re also seeing is a divide between the political class, who tends to behave pragmatically within a two-party system, and what’s happening with the working class and the people who are really kind of bearing the brunt of neoliberal policies, saying that we’re not enthused about any of the candidates, including Clinton. So I don’t hear a whole lot of enthusiasm on the ground in my neighborhood. ...
Internal documents from the Chicago police department show that officers used physical force on at least 14 men already in custody at the warehouse known as Homan Square.
Police used punches, knee strikes, elbow strikes, slaps, wrist twists, baton blows and Tasers at Homan Square, according to documents released to the Guardian in the course of its transparency lawsuit about the warehouse. The new information contradicts an official denial about treatment of prisoners at the facility. ... [Guardian - 11/4/16]
A grieving family is demanding answers and questioning LAPD claims that 36-year-old Wakiesha Wilson committed suicide in a police jail cell. ... [ABC 7 - 6/4/16]
US immigrant detention centres remind therapist of traumatic childhood in WW2 internment camps [LA Times - 11/4/16]:
... As Ina visited the center in Dilley, about 150 miles southwest of Austin, she scrutinized families for signs of trauma she recognized as both a former detainee and a family psychotherapist.
Mothers were issued identity cards, just as her parents had been. They spoke of eating unfamiliar food at mess halls, living under constant observation and stress, never letting their children leave their sides. In the young mothers she met, Ina saw her own.
Ina had produced two award-winning documentaries on internment, "Children of the Camps" in 1999 and "From a Silk Cocoon" in 2005. Now she was discovering a new story to tell.
One Salvadoran mother detained for five months tearfully told Ina through an interpreter that her 8-year-old daughter was afraid to sleep and cried for hours whenever children she befriended at the center departed.
Ina asked the girl why she cried. The girl glanced over her shoulder at a female guard before whispering that she feared that the departing children, whose families had fled gangs and violence, were being sent home to their deaths.
Why did she have trouble sleeping, Ina asked? Again, the girl checked that the guard wasn't listening.
Then she said she had been having nightmares about a scary dog — the dog the Border Patrol had used to catch her. ...
Seven decades ago the US detained 120,000 Japanese Americans, could it happen again? [Democracy Now - 11/4/16]
The Nauru government says it has set up a sovereign trust fund with an initial deposit of just over US$15 million.
In a statement, it said that by the middle of the year it expects to have US$24 million based on an Asian Development Bank grant, and annual contributions by Australia and Taiwan.
The Intergenerational Trust Fund will be chaired by the finance minister, David Adeang. ... [RNZI - 12/4/16]
Asian Development Bank, Australia grants to help Nauru strengthen fiscal sustainability [30/3/16]
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has appointed Deborah Stokes [Former Australian High Commissioner to PNG] as Vice-President for Administration and Corporate Management. ... [Media Release - 24/11/15]
June 2015 edition of Australian government's Manus Island pro-concentration camp/pro-torture propaganda an example of fascism which mocks locals, refugees and Australians. [ABC - 24/6/15]:
The operator of the Manus Island detention centre has donated a mobile boxing ring to the community, despite local staff being accused of bashing an Iranian asylum seeker to death last year.
The donation was publicised in the Australian High Commission's monthly newsletter.
"The mobile boxing ring will assist the Boxing Association to stage boxing tournaments in all places in Manus," said the newsletter caption.
One of the two men arrested for the murder of Reza Barati in February last year was a competitive amateur boxer.
Refugee advocates worry about the message the boxing ring sends to local staff.
"Given the levels of endemic violence on Manus Island, and the alleged involvement of a boxer in the death of Reza Barati, Transfield's gift of a mobile boxing ring to stage tournaments is inappropriate and in poor taste," Refugee Action Coalition spokesman Ian Rintoul said.
"It would seem to be the actions of a company completely out of touch with the society in which it operates and devoid of any idea of corporate responsibility."
Refugee exiled by Australia goes into hiding on Manus Island after being exploited by Transfield for propaganda campaign [ABC - 13/6/15]
Probably the last time the former protected and unaccountable High Commissioner in PNG was questioned by the media - 11 mins in ----> [VIDEO - Keep Out! - SBS Dateline - 28/3/13]:
… Just days before Prime Minister Gillard's arrival in Port Morseby, the Australian High Commissioner, Deborah Stokes, made a flying visit to the refugee centre, not expecting to be bugged, it would seem, by the presence of any journalists on the island.
REPORTER: Ma'am, it's Mark Davis from SBS TV, can I ask you how your trip was to the facility?
DEBORAH STOKES, AUSTRALIAN HIGH COMMISSIONER: It was a very straight forward trip to the facility.
REPORTER: Are you concerned - I mean there's been various rumours published about the place. Are you concerned about those rumours of inadequate facilities for children and mistreatment of adults?
DEBORAH STOKES: I've had a good look at the facility and that's all I can say at this point.
REPORTER: Could I ask you one question - why is the place so obsessively secretive - no access to journalists, NGOs, lawyers?
DEBORAH STOKES: It's run by the Papua New Guinean Government and that's their decision.
REPORTER: The Papua New Guinean Government says it's not, the Prime Minister says he's happy for journalists and others to go there because he's worried the rumours are growing to such a degree no-one can verify them or otherwise.
DEBORAH STOKES: We will have a discussion with the PNG Government about that.
REPORTER: So as far as you're aware, the Australian Government has no problem with access?
DEBORAH STOKES: The PNG Government is the administrator of the centre and it is on their land, and we will have a discussion with them about that.
REPORTER: So theoretically if they're happy with it, it shouldn't be a problem?
DEBORAH STOKES: Yes. ...
Eye infections go untreated in Australia's refugee concentration camps. Where are you Fran Kelly? [Nauru Refugees - 11/4/16]:
Eye infections have reached epidemic proportions in Nauru. There appears to be no treatment available and the sufferers have not been given a diagnosis by IHMS.
And eye disease is rife in Manus too. It seems to be a result of the bright and burning sun and its reflection on the white ground burning the eyes.
Occasionally the men are issued with sunglasses, but this seems to too little, too late.
A few men have reportedly been sent to Port Moresby for surgery but all have returned untreated.
I am told that the doctors in PM show the men dirty and rusted instruments, tell the guys that they do not have the facility for safe operations on eyes, and the men decide it is too dangerous.
Political, media and medical establishment continue invisibilising the refugees Australia is pushing back and torturing [ABC - 12/4/16]
As above ---> @UNrefugees - Australia for UNHCR [12/4/16]: "Everyone loses" - UN @refugees statement on violence and #refugees on Macedonian border ...
Pushbacks, indefinite detention, torture and refoulement is Australia's refugee policy. It's bipartisan and this is not journalism ---> Federal politicians have swapped barbs on immigration as the Turnbull Government confirms tens of thousands of asylum seekers who arrived under the former Labor government remain unprocessed.
Social Services Minister Christian Porter has previously cited security processes as the reasoning for the lengthy process, but Senator Singh — a vocal refugee advocate — said that "really doesn't make sense". ... [ABC - 12/4/16] <--- If Senator Singh was "a vocal refugee advocate", she'd have left the ALP LONG AGO. Please stop insulting our intelligence ABC.
When Mormons helped South East Asia's boat refugees [Salt Lake City Tribune - 11/4/16]:
... "Elder Hanks' vision to rescue the Southeast Asian refugees altered my life, and has given them a refuge in my heart and homes all these years," she writes.
"He was teaching the same principle 36 years ago [as Kearon and Burton] in the April 1980 General Conference, when he said, "There are others, nearer at hand, who struggle with problems with which we must also be concerned. ... We must have individual concern for the strangers among us, resident or passing through."
In other words, "refugees can be far away in remote places, but they can be in close proximity, too," Shumway says.
"It is for us to discern how to help the strangers around us."
Bali Process: Another excellent outcome ---> Rohingya girl who fled mob violence, separated from parents, now enslaved in Kashmir [Kashmir Reader - 9/4/16]:
A minor Rohingya girl ran for her life when a mob went on a rampage in her village in Burma and burnt several houses, including hers. It was only the beginning of a long nightmare.
After the incident of arson and loot, she took shelter in a neighbour’s home in a neighbouring village. She had no idea where her parents had gone in their flight for safety.
“I could not search my parents physically in Burma because a shutdown was observed there. Their phone was also switched off,” said the girl, who is currently in the custody of the J&K government.
The man, in whose home she had taken shelter, misled her into believing that her family was in Bangladesh. Once she arrived in Bangladesh with him, she was told that they have gone to India.
About six months ago (she doesn’t remember exact dates), she was brought to Seer, Ashmuqam in Anantnag district and married off to one Shabir Ahmad son of Ghulam Nabi.
“I was told my Nikkah has been performed with that old man. But I questioned how could they perform my Nikkah without my consent and threatened them I will report to the police. They later kept me as a maid.”
“One day I got an opportunity to call my parents from Shabir’s father’s mobile phone. They told me they had never left Burma. I have them my address and they informed my maternal uncle who is living as a refugee in Delhi. They also gave him the phone number of Shabir’s father,” she told Kashmir Reader.
Her maternal uncle got in touch with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees in India, who contacted a lawyer, Faisal Shah, in the Valley in January this year.
Faisal, along with her uncle, attempted to filed a complaint with police in Ashmuqam but it was not registered.
“The SHO Ashmuqam told me the family has bought her for Rs 70,000 and refused to register the complaint,” said Faisal, who filed a writ petition in the High Court and rescued the girl from that family.
However, despite having faced hardships, the girl does not want to file a case against them.
“For six-months, I had to clean the house, do the work in their fields and take care of cattle in the house. I was not paid anything,” she said, “But I am a Muslim. How am I different from them if I file a case against them? My only wish is to go home. ”
Faisal said the court is waiting for a response from the ministry of home and external affairs. The next step will be decided by the communication from the ministry.
“I hope she will be deported to her home soon,” he said.
Woodside has signed a co-operation agreement with Korea Gas Corporation, which they said extended the already strong partnership between the two companies.
The memorandum of understanding was signed in Perth today by Woodside chief executive Peter Coleman and KOGAS president and chief executive Lee Seung-Hoon on the first day of the LNG18 conference. ... [West Australian - 11/4/16]
Bali Process: Australia's exceptionalist, isolationist, anti-refugee policies matter [Jakarta Globe - 21/3/16]
Tamils in Jaffna protest against Sri Lankan military land grabs [Tamil Guardian - 11/4/16]
The Sri Lankan government has opened a new village in the Tamil North-East of the island, as part of a revival of a controversial Sinhala colonisation program.
The ‘Village Reawakening’ program was declared open by Sri Lanka’s Minister of Housing and Construction Sajith Premadasa at Weli Oya today.
Houses were constructed on land gifted to villagers by the Sri Lankan government and with loans provided at concessionary rates of interest. ... [Tamil Guardian - 11/4/16]
An alleged terrorist, Siyono, died as a result of a broken rib piercing his heart, an independent autopsy overseen by the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM), the Muhammadiyah’s youth wing and the Forensics Physicians Organization revealed on Monday. ... [Jakarta Post - 11/4/16]
12 April 2016