Protestors sitting atop ladders and locked together are currently blocking inbound traffic outside of the Regional Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Field Office located at 101 W. Congress in Chicago, IL as others read a declaration inside the building.

“I am here to say that there needs to be an end to raids and deportations,” explains Francisco Canuto, whose home was raided by ICE in November of last year, while agents were looking for someone else.

“Agents entered my home under false pretenses, they fingerprinted me and my roommates, and took me into detention. I spent 13 awful days in a detention center that I don’t wish on anyone.” ... [#NOT1MORE - 16/2/16]













Image: ‏@MiriamVPerkins [16/2/16]




We are innocent.




930 days in detention.





Australia's Immigration Department deploys goons to intimidate refugee family at Lady Cilento Hospital [TIME - 16/2/16]




‏@iainp327 [16/2/16]:  Some of the crew at LCCH tonight. Lots of laughs. Come and join us #LetThemStay




How many refugee and asylum seeker boats did the Australian "Fuck your mothers ... fuck your family ..." Navy push back and/or abandon today?  @ItalianNavy [16/2/16]:  #UltimOra #SAR Nave Fulgosi #MarinaMilitare completa il primo soccorso recuperando 121 migranti dal gommone




‏@MSF_Sea [16/2/16]:   It's windy at sea and there is a slight chop on the water, but all those on board this mornings 2 boats are safe.  




It is important that countries that regularly engage in naming and shaming of other countries accept United Nations rulings when they themselves are implicated.


It is a matter of intellectual honesty.


UN rights expert urges the UK and Sweden to give good example to the world and implement the Assange ruling [Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights - 15/2/16]:

United Nations human rights expert Alfred de Zayas today called on the Governments of the United Kingdom and Sweden to accept and implement without delay the findings and recommendations of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention* in the case of Julian Assange.

The UN Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order recalled that a just and sustainable international order requires that States respect, promote and fulfill their human rights treaty obligations and observe the recommendations of human rights treaty-bodies, working groups and rapporteurs.

“The findings of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention should be accepted and their recommendations implemented in good faith. Especially those States who claim to be at the vanguard of human rights should give good example, even if they do not agree with the conclusions of UN experts,” he said.

“The international order depends on the consistent and uniform application of international law, and is undermined when States pick and choose. The concept of human dignity is holistic. An à la carte approach to human rights erodes the credibility of the entire system,” the expert stressed.

The opinion of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention ruled that Mr. Assange’s detention was contrary to various provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and called upon the UK and Sweden to ensure his safety and physical integrity, to facilitate the exercise of his right to freedom of movement, and to pay him compensation.

“The international order is strengthened when all States comply not only with binding treaty obligations, but also with the recommendations of UN bodies. Not only ‘hard law’ but also ‘soft law’ commitments and human rights pledges should be given effect.” Mr. de Zayas added.

“If a State is truly committed to a philosophy of human rights, it cannot limit the enjoyment of those rights by engaging in narrow pedestrian positivism or invoking technical distinctions or loopholes in an attempt to escape ethical obligations.”

“Whistleblowers are key human rights defenders in the twenty-first century, in which a culture of secrecy, behind-closed-door deals, disinformation, lack of access to information, 1984-like surveillance of individuals, intimidation and self-censorship lead to gross violations of human rights,” highlighted the Independent Expert.

“Secrecy and intimidation are irreconcilable with the fundamental right under article 19 ICCPR to receive and impart information and to freedom of expression as emphasized by the former Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression.”

“It is important that countries that regularly engage in naming and shaming of other countries accept United Nations rulings when they themselves are implicated. It is a matter of intellectual honesty. Prompt implementation of the Working Group’s Opinion would set an example for the rest of the world,” Mr. de Zayas concluded.





The detention of Julian Assange is inhumane [European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights - 15/2/16]




UN Victory in Assange Case:  Decision has big implications for refugees and whistleblowers [Center for Constitutional Rights - 5/2/16]





‏@punkassneenja [16/2/16]:   Lady Cilento Children's Hospital vigil still strong #LetThemStay #BringThemBack #CloseTheCamps @4ZZZ





Faith Communities' Candle Light Vigil:



Join us and other local faith communities to together "Light the Dark" for Baby Asha, her parents and the other 264 mums, dads & kids being threatened with removal to the unsafe conditions in Australia's detention centres on Nauru.

We'll gather for one hour on Wednesday evening (17th Feb 2016) outside the Lady Cilento Hospital in Brisbane to show these families that we stand with them to respect their human dignity and thus to protect their well-being.

 Our presence will show our support for the brave doctors, nurses and other staff of the hospital who have acted to protect Baby Asha, and will send a clear message to those who are threatening these vulnerable children.





@abbypage_ [16/2/16]:   #LadyCilento #protestors for baby #Asha as Federal Treasurer @ScottMorrisonMP visits #qld ...




‏@redlizthompson [16/2/16]:   16/02/2014 Oscar compound at Manus RPC attacked. Men had throats cut, heads cut, arms broken, teeth stomped out of heads. #Closethecamps




Manus camp a human 'experiment' [New Matilda - 25/2/14]:


The Australian government is maintaining a “charade” on Manus Island by pretending to process the claims of asylum seekers when in fact the detention camp is designed to be nothing more than a deterrent to others, a former staff member has told SBS Dateline in an interview to be aired tonight.

Migration agent Liz Thompson, who was working on the island during last week’s violent attack on detainees by G4S staff, locals and PNG police tells Dateline that she was part of a team of agents employed by the Australian government to assess the claims of detainees at the centre.

She says the process she was involved in was a “farce”.

“It’s not designed as a processing facility, it’s designed as an experiment in the active creation of horror, to deter people from trying in the first place,” she tells Dateline’s Mark Davis.





Manus Island:  Footage emerges of 'war zone'-like scenes following attack on refugees [VIDEO - 1/3/14]





Worse than war: Azita Bokan witnessed violent assaults on Manus Island [AUDIO - ABC - 21/4/14]:


Azita Bokan was an interpreter working in the detention centre on Manus Island.

Azita was on the island when violence broke out between security guards and detained asylum seekers on the Papua New Guinean island this week.


Azita witnessed seven G4S guards assault a detainee who was pushing an injured man in a wheelchair towards the medical compound.

In this extensive interview Azita tells Richard Glover of events that have left one man dead, another man suffering gun-shot wounds, and many injured.






TWO YEARS. Why has the Australian human rights establishment's clear demand to to #CLOSETHECAMPS vaporised?




Closing Manus facility 'only acceptable option', says Human Rights Law Centre [VIDEO - ABC - 25/2/14]:


Emily Howie from the Human Rights Law Centre says it is not acceptable that a former Sri Lankan military officer is acting manager of the Manus Island detention centre, where 30 of the asylum seekers are ethnic Tamil Sri Lankans.




Uniting Church in Australia Media Release [18/2/14]:


The Uniting Church in Australia has expressed sorrow over the tragic loss of life on Manus Island.

“The Church is deeply concerned about the death of one asylum seeker and the injury of so many others,” said President of the Uniting Church, Rev. Prof. Andrew Dutney.

“Sadly this tragedy was both predictable and preventable. The Australian Government has placed vulnerable people in a situation where their basic needs are not being met.

“These individuals have fled violence and horror in their homelands – and have now been exposed to it yet again as a direct result of Australian Government policies.”

Rev. Elenie Poulos, National Director of UnitingJustice Australia, has reiterated the Church’s call to end offshore processing.

“The Uniting Church has always been opposed to the offshore processing of asylum seekers. We have been increasingly alarmed at the effects of the harsh and punishing conditions on Manus and Nauru. Australia must protect people not place them in situations of harm.

“The warehousing of asylum seekers in inadequate facilities in these offshore centres is entirely unacceptable. It is a breach of our obligations under international law and diminishes us as a nation.

“The Government must move immediately to close the centres and transfer all asylum seekers to safety here on the Australian mainland. We cannot continue to risk the lives of asylum seekers for the sake of these inhumane policies,” said Rev. Poulos.



The fact something is legal under the system’s laws, doesn’t make it right.



John Africa






Rachel, student, "Seeking asylum is a human right." #LetThemStay #LadyCilento #babyasha ...



Image:  ‏@AnnaAvocado [16/2/16]




The Australian government is getting away with this because there is NO opposition --->  Government moves to fast-track deportations to Nauru as Baby Asha given 72 hour undertaking [Human Rights Law Centre - 16/2/16]:


... Mr Webb confirmed that the Government has now given an undertaking to provide 72 hours notice before deporting baby Asha, but only after the HRLC filed an emergency High Court proceeding on the family’s behalf.

“We made repeated requests for the government to agree to at least provide reasonable notice if it planned to deport this child, but they refused. We were left with no choice but to file an urgent case in the High Court,” said Mr Webb.

“Just like the brave medical staff at the Lady Cilento Hospital and the communities of people maintaining a round-the-clock vigil outside the hospital, we cannot sit back and do nothing while our Government tries to rip a baby from her hospital bed and send her to languish in a tent on Nauru,” said Mr Webb.

An urgent High Court hearing was scheduled for Tuesday morning but the hearing was vacated after the government finally agreed to provide the 72 hour undertaking Baby Asha’s lawyers had been seeking.

Mr Webb said that despite being born in Australia, baby Asha had been secretively deported without notice once before.

“When Asha was 5 months old, around 15 guards stormed her family’s room while they were sleeping. They took her from her mother’s arms and restrained her mother and father in cable ties. They forced the family into a van, then onto a plane to Nauru. That’s a horrible thing to go through once – we’ll do everything we can to make sure it doesn’t happen again,” said Mr Webb.

“Baby Asha spoke her first words in a detention camp on Nauru. She took her first steps in a detention camp on Nauru. It’s well and truly time for our government to realise that this child deserves what every child in the world deserves – a chance at a decent life somewhere safe,” said Mr Webb.





‏@ama_media [16/2/16]:  Being locked up indefinitely in isolated detention is a form of abuse. The AMA says no more. ...



In response to his tweet of support [12/2/16] for Lady Cilento health professionals, we asked the Vice President of the AMA Stephen Parnis if the AMA had an official statement. 


He directed us to this revised 2011 position statement [23/12/15]:


... 17. Doctors have a duty to speak out when health care services or the environment within an immigration detention centre is inadequate or poses a threat to health.

18. Prolonged, indeterminate detention of asylum seekers in immigration detention centres violates basic human rights and contributes adversely to their health. The longer a person is in detention, the higher their risk of mental illness. Detention in immigration detention centres should be used only as a last resort, and for the shortest practicable time. Solutions to prolonged, indeterminate detention must be sought as a matter of urgency.

19. In order that asylum seekers do not spend a prolonged, indeterminate period of time in detention, the Government must set in law an absolute maximum duration that an asylum seeker can spend in detention. After such time, the asylum seeker should be allowed to live in the community while their visa application continues to be assessed. 






New Zealand Human Rights Commission:  No one – especially children – belongs in the Australian Government’s immigration detention centres [Media Release - 16/2/16]:



New Zealand’s Human Rights Commission has welcomed the potential news that asylum seeker children – born in Australia and destined for detention centres in Nauru – may be offered sanctuary in New Zealand.

“Our Government has the power to do the humane thing, to take in these youngsters and to make a powerful statement to the world about our own humanity: this is about innocent children,” said Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy.

“We urge our country’s leaders to do the right thing and stand up for human rights and the rights of some of the planet’s most vulnerable people.”














... In Brisbane, Queensland Unions and the ACTU have backed the workers and have set up a roster for unionists to have a presence at the ongoing picket. ... <---- Hypocrites still trying to discipline and monopolise protests.



Tory pro detention unions place full page advertisement in anti refugee, red baiting Murdoch Press --->  @xBorderOps [11/2/16]:  @GetUp, all #nobusinessinabuse unless it's their mates at @unionsaustralia. #LetThemStay




ABC, Lateline [5/10/15]:


... HAMISH FITZSIMMONS: As the nation's largest investors, superannuation funds are aware of their clout and some say it's better to use that influence on a company's governance and behaviour for change than to divest.

DAVE OLIVER, ACTU SECRETARY: We want more accountability to the large companies that we are investing in in regards to what's happening with these supply chains.

HAMISH FITZSIMMONS: Australian Super is the biggest industry super fund in the country, managing retirement savings of many of Australia's union members. The ACTU secretary, Dave Oliver, is a director.

DAVE OLIVER: I am aware that there's more transparency in the way that these companies are investing, and in doing so, that is changing some of the behaviour. And I don't see it being mutually exclusive. We can use the power of the funds and the investment to actually change behaviour, at the same time still deliver a good return for our members.

 LIZ THOMPSON: That might be fine if we were talking about, like, you know, a jeans factory with some occupational health and safety issues and underpayment of workers. It's not appropriate for a concentration camp. You can't make a concentration camp better; you just need to close it. Our demand is that, you know, it's very easy for these investors to screen out concentration camps the way they screen out tobacco. Just do it.





 Christine from Bondi 'what if this were my daughter' ...



Image:   ‏@ellen_roberts




‏@ellen_roberts [16/2/16]:   Page from the cupcake parlour gives cupcakes to the vigil saying she cares because we're all human ...




‏@CAPSA_Ican [16/2/16]:   Hundreds gathering at St Patricks to pray to #letthemstay




Catholics Pray to #LetThemStay





‏@novidados [16/2/16]:   RPAH staff in solidarity with refugees and workers at #LadyCilento #letthemstay #closethecamps




Lady Cilento Hospital doctors and staff know their ethical responsibilities [Australian Association of Social Workers - 15/2/16]:



The refusal of doctors and staff at the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital in Brisbane to discharge baby Asha so the government can return her to detention on Nauru is to be admired, says Australian Association of Social Workers’ National President, Professor Karen Healy AM.

”The doctors and staff are following through with their ethical responsibilities to their patient. They know that Asha’s social, emotional and psychological development would be severely compromised if she, and other traumatised asylum seeker children, were returned to the offshore detention centre,” Professor Healy said.

Professor Healy, who was named as a Member of the Order of Australia this year for her contributions to social work in the areas of child protection, higher education and research, said the Australian Government must stop its practice of institutionally abusing children and rationalising that it stops other desperate families getting on boats to come to Australia.

“The government appears to have learnt little from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse,” she said.

“If the Nauru facility was on Australian soil, it would probably have been closed down months ago.”

”It is time for the Prime Minister to make the right decision to keep these children safe. The way to do this is by keeping them and their families in Australia and providing them with the support they need to reduce the impact of trauma in their lives,” Professor Healy said.

The AASW represents over 9,000 professional social workers, many at the frontline of refugee and migrant welfare.




ABC [4/2/16]:


The Coalition and Labor have joined forces to vote down a motion to grant amnesty to almost 270 asylum seekers currently in Australia.

The 267 people, including 37 babies, are facing the prospect of being sent to Nauru in the wake of yesterday's High Court judgement which upheld offshore immigration detention.

Greens senator Sarah Hanson-Young today moved a motion in the Senate, asking for the Federal Government to allow the asylum seekers to remain onshore.

In full, the motion read: "the Senate calls on the Turnbull Government to grant amnesty to the 267 men, women and children in Australia as part of the M68 High Court challenge, and allow them to stay."

It was defeated 10-40, with independent senator John Madigan siding with the Greens.









‏@IraqiSMCEn - Iraqi Spring Media Center [15/2/16]:


 Baghdad: A roadside bomb attached to a car has exploded in Baladiyat area east of Baghdad resulted in killing of a teacher ......




Baghdad: A roadside bomb has exploded near a traditional market in Mishahda nahiya in Tarmiya district north of Baghdad resulted in 3 deaths and 8 injuries ..................




Baghdad: A roadside bomb has exploded in Nahrawan area south of Baghdad resulted in death and 6 injuries....................




Baghdad: Militias in 4x4 cars stopped a civilian in Karada area in the middle of Baghdad and shot fire towads him ,then stole $10 thousand today noon..... It is noteworthy that these cases spread in the areas controlled by Hashd militias.......................................





16 February 2016