Australia's Deputy Prime Minister celebrates his ancestors arriving by boat.

 

 WHAT AN ARSEHOLE.

 

 

 

At 6.30 last night 150 years ago, my Great-great Grandfather Phillipp Truss disembarked from the "Sophie" in Maryborough. We are still here

 

 

 

"tweeted" by @warrentrussmp [31/8/15]



 

 

New book fills gaps in Maryborough’s migrant history [My Sunshine Coast - 20/8/15]:

 

 

... The 400-page social history is titled “From the Edge of Oblivion”. It starts in the chaos of the early 1600s in Europe, and follows the survivors into sanctuaries in northern Europe until the German-Danish conflict in the Schleswig-Holstein region makes their descendants refugees once again.

Families of Stehbens, Hinricks, Truss, Peters, Zwisler, Wieckhorst, Bauer and Andresen are among the refugees who accepted the offer of assisted passage to Maryborough, Australia, which was desperate for labour to develop its new sugar industry and expand the town. ...

 

 

 

 

 

... The Australian Federal Police's (AFP) new $1.2 million canine operations centre was officially opened by Federal Justice Minister Michael Keenan on Monday.

It will house Brisbane's six firearm and explosives detection dogs and three currency and drug detection dogs.

...

The new centre includes 18 overnight kennels, three isolation kennels, an agility yard, nine day runs and a vet treatment room.

It's the fifth canine operations centre to be opened at Australia's major airports. ...  [Yahoo - 31/8/15]

 

 

 

Refugees' constitutional challenge to their detention in Australia's Guantanamo on Manus Is. to be heard in PNG Supreme Court September 7

 

 

PNG Loop [31/8/15]:

 

 

Chief Migration Officer Rabura Mataio and the State have been restrained from deporting detainees who were found to be not genuine refugees at the Manus Regional Processing Centre back to their country of origin.

The Supreme Court on August 25 restrained Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Rimbink Pato and Mr Mataio from forcibly deporting the 28 detainees.

This comes after the detainees through their lawyer Ben Lomai filed an urgent application last Tuesday seeking to stop their deportation after two of his clients were deported to Iran the previous week.

These clients are among the 301 asylum seekers who are part of a legal proceeding in the enforcement of section 57 of the Constitution.

The matter was supposed to return to court on August 27 however lawyer for the detainees Ben Lomai says that restraining order has been further adjourned to September 7.

 

 

 

Australia's refugee concentration camp on Nauru cannot continue, Senate Inquiry report reveals



Greens Media Release [31/8/15]:


Children are being assaulted, women are unsafe and the detention camp on Nauru cannot be allowed to continue in its current form, a Senate Inquiry report has said today.

"It can't be made any clearer that locking children up with the guards on Nauru is exposing them to abuse," the Greens' immigration spokesperson, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

"The government's head-in-the-sand approach to mounting evidence of systemic child abuse is causing immeasurable harm.

"Nauru's legal system has collapsed, its police force is not capable of protecting women and children and there is a sinister culture of secrecy that hangs heavy over the camp. No one there is safe.

"Journalists and independent human rights groups clearly need to be allowed into the centre.

"It was deeply disappointing to see, on the day of the release of this report, the government is sticking with Transfield Services for another five years. It's shameful that, instead of acting to protect vulnerable women and children, the government has rewarded Transfield for the culture of cover up and secrecy on Nauru.

"Being personally spied on while I visited Nauru was serious and deeply concerning. This wasn't just a few rogue employees, as the government and Wilsons Security tried to make out. It's clear the lawlessness on the island means that anyone who goes there is a possible target of bullying and intimidation. If this is how they treat a Federal Senator, it's no wonder refugees are regularly exposed to serious abuse.

"It's clear that the Nauru camp needs to be shut down, before more damage is done, but at the very least the current contractors who are running the camp should be sacked."

 

 

 

Recent Allegations relating to Conditions and Circumstances at the Regional Processing Centre in Nauru

 

 

 

Men hospitalised after self harm incidents at Australia's refugee concentration camps Yongah Hill and Wickham Point [Sydney Morning Herald - 31/8/15]:

 

 

 

An Afghan man who is believed to have tried to take his own life has been returned to a West Australian detention centre after a week-long stay in a hospital.

Another asylum seeker tried to commit suicide at Wickham Point Detention Centre on Sunday morning.

A fellow detainee said the Afghan man, believed to be Ali Jaffery, "cut his throat" at the Yongah​ Hill Detention Centre, north-west of Perth, on August 21.

...

The detainee said the man, who was in his late 20s, had been in the "mental health room" and didn't mingle with anyone.

"There was too much blood," the detainee said.

"I saw the blanket and his singlet ... it was covered in blood. All of it was was red.

"There was blood in the front of the room."

The detainee said others who had been inside the room saw both the bed and the floor were covered in blood.

He said such incidents of self-harm had become the norm at the centre.

"Every day someone tries to hang themselves," he said.

"Whatever we do, nothing happens."

...

For help or information on mental health issues call Lifeline 131 114

 

 

 

 

Netherlands plan tougher policy as refugees flee to Europe [Reuters - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

Greek Coast Guard rescues nearly 2,500 refugees in 3 days

 

 

 

Ahram [31/8/15]:

 

 

 

Greece's coast guard says it has picked up nearly 2,500 migrants from the sea in dozens of search and rescue operations over the weekend, part of a relentless flow of people heading for the safety of Europe after facing war and poverty in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

The coast guard said Monday it had rescued 2,492 people in 70 operations off the eastern islands of Lesbos, Chios, Samos, Agathonissi, Farmakonissi, Kos and Symi from Friday morning until Monday morning.

Separately, it said a coast guard patrol boat rescued another 13 people spotted in the water near the port of Chios by a local boat.

One person was recovered unconscious and transported to a hospital. The circumstances of the incident were not immediately clear.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Iran says efforts should be made to lay the groundwork for the voluntary repatriation of Afghan refugees from the Islamic Republic.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran’s fundamental policy on refugees is based on their voluntary return home,” said Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi in Tehran on Sunday.

The diplomat made the remarks in a meeting with head of the Executive Committee of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Pedro Commissario Afonso. ... [Press TV - 31/8/15]

  

 

 

 

 

The information and culture director of southern Kandahar province was wounded in an armed attack by unidentified gunmen Monday morning.  ... [Pajhwok - 31/8/1]

 

 

 

 

 

Afghanistan:  US deploys 90 Special Operations troops in Helmand province [Khaama - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gunmen attack remote Pakistan airport, kill two engineers [Reuters - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mexican authorities on Sunday arrested a former police officer in connection with the brutal slaying of a prominent photojournalist and four others in a case that sparked international outrage.

Police arrested a man "identified as Abraham Torres Tranquilino" for alleged involvement in the killing of Ruben Espinosa, rights activist Nadia Vera and three other female victims, Mexico City prosecutor Rodolfo Rios said in a statement.

Espinosa and the other victims were found dead on July 31 this year in a Mexico City apartment, their hands bound and their bodies bearing signs of torture. ... [Naharnet - 31/8/15]

 


 

 

 

NATO kicks off naval drills in Black Sea with Ukraine [RT - 31/8/15]


 

 

 

 

 

Yemen children's hospital faces closure cue to shortages [Naharnet - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Islamic extremist group Boko Haram killed 56 villagers in a remote area, the governor of Borno State of the region said Sunday, as the government warned that the extremists are trying to extend their violent campaign.

Gov. Kashim Shettima confirmed the attack in Baanu village during a meeting with the parents of the 219 girls abducted from a school in the region by the extremists last year. Thursday marked 500 days of captivity of the girls from a school in Chibok. ... [US News - 30/8/15]

 

 



 

 

 

US businessman arrested in Sierra Leone 'blood diamond' case [Daily Star – 30/8/15]


 

 

 

 

 

A 61-year-old bystander who was shot Friday by an undercover police officer chasing an alleged illegal firearms dealer near New York City has died, authorities said. ... [NBC - 30/8/15]

 

 



 

 

 

Man faces capital murder charge in killing of Houston deputy [Reuters – 29/8/15]

 

 

 

11 dead, 219 hurt in fire at Saudi oil giant housing complex [Naharnet - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

One of the more prominent industrial unions in the U.S. voted to endorse the goals of the worldwide boycott, divestment and sanction (BDS) movement against Israel, citing "its long history of violating the human rights of the Palestinians," thus purportedly becoming the first nationwide union to do so.

The United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers' national convention met in Baltimore last week and voted on a string of foreign and as well as domestic policy issues, including the call to boycott Israel and support the nuclear deal with Iran. ... [Haaretz - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

Anti-government activists have waged rallies across Egypt to protest the continuing state crackdown on the opponents of the military coup against former President Mohamed Morsi.

Protest rallies, organized by Egypt’s Revolutionary Youth movement, took place in a number of provinces throughout the country on Sunday.  ... [Press TV - 31/8/15]

 

 

 

Military court sentence 5 Muslim Brotherhood members to 15 years in jail [Ahram - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

Egypt summons British ambassador to protest comments on Fahmy verdict [Global News - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

Italian energy giant Eni on Sunday announced the discovery of the "largest ever" offshore natural gas field in the Mediterranean, in Egypt's territorial waters. ... [Naharnet - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

The United States announced on Tuesday it was lifting its hold on the supply of military equipment to Egypt, which was frozen when the military took power in Cairo nearly two years ago.

The White House said President Barack Obama was freeing up the equipment and making other changes to military ties with Washington's long-time ally to support U.S. interests while encouraging Egypt's political reforms.

Obama directed the release of 12 Lockheed Martin F-16 aircraft, 20 Boeing Harpoon missiles, and up to 125 M1A1 Abrams tank kits made by General Dynamics, National Security Council spokesperson Bernadette Meehan said.

This was "in the interest of U.S. national security," she said.

The decision was announced after a telephone call between Obama and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in which they also discussed the turmoil that is gripping the region ... [Reuters - 31/3/15]

 

 

 

The U.S.’s lethal drone campaign would not come to an end if Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) entered the White House, the presidential contender said on Sunday,

In an interview on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” Sanders indicated that he would limit the use of drones so that they do not end up killing innocent people abroad, but declined to say that he would end the targeted killing campaign completely. ... [The Hill - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

Australian Renas Lelikan trapped in Iraqi refugee camp refused passport by DFAT [ABC - 31/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

ISIL blows up part of main temple in Syria's Palmyra [Al Jazeera - 31/8/15]

 

 

United States, "allies" continue bombing Iraq and Syria

 

 

 

US Department of Defense [30/8/15]:

 

U.S. and coalition military forces have continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria and Iraq, 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.

Airstrikes in Syria

Bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted seven airstrikes in Syria:

-- Near Al Hawl, one airstrike struck three ISIL fighting positions.

-- Near Ar Raqqah, one airstrike struck an ISIL facility.

-- Near Kobani, four airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and three ISIL excavators and destroyed five ISIL motorcycles, three ISIL structures, two ISIL guard shacks, two ISIL excavators and an ISIL vehicle.

-- Near Washiyah, one airstrike had inconclusive results.

Airstrikes in Iraq

Attack, bomber, fighter, fighter-attack and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 13 airstrikes in Iraq, coordinated with the Iraqi government:

-- Near Bayji, two airstrikes struck an ISIL large tactical unit and an ISIL heavy machine gun firing position and destroyed seven ISIL buildings, two ISIL heavy machine guns and an ISIL weapons cache.

-- Near Habbaniyah, one airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit.

-- Near Kisik, one airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL fighting position and an ISIL heavy machine gun.

-- Near Ramadi, five airstrikes struck three ISIL staging areas and destroyed two ISIL vehicles.

-- Near Sinjar, one airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL fighting positions.

-- Near Tuz, three airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed four ISIL vehicles, two ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL mortar position.

...

 

 



Refugee crisis forces EU to seek answers



Reuters [30/8/15]:


European Union ministers were summoned on Sunday to meet in two weeks' time to seek urgent solutions to a migration crisis unprecedented in the bloc's history, as the mounting death toll on land and sea forced governments to respond.

Luxembourg, which holds the rotating EU presidency, called interior ministers from all 28 member states to an extraordinary meeting on Sept. 14, saying: "The situation of migration phenomena outside and inside the European Union has recently taken unprecedented proportions."

Chancellor Angela Merkel earlier called on her EU neighbours to do more as Germany expects the number of asylum seekers it receives to quadruple to about 800,000 in 2015.

"If Europe has solidarity and we have also shown solidarity towards others, then we need to show solidarity now," she told reporters in Berlin.

"Everything must move quickly."

Luxembourg said the meeting would focus on policies on sending some migrants home and measures to prevent human trafficking.

Seven people died when their boat sank off Libya's coast on Sunday, the second such fatal accident at sea within days. The Italian coastguard said some 1,600 migrants had been rescued in the Mediterranean and brought to Italy over the weekend.

At least 2,500 migrants have died since January, most of them drowning in the Mediterranean after arduous journeys fleeing war, oppression or poverty in Syria and other parts of the Middle East and Africa or beyond.

The horrors faced by migrants were brought to the heart of the European mainland on Friday when 71 bodies, including those of a baby girl and three other children were found in an abandoned refrigeration truck in Austria.

The dead, believed to be refugees from Syria or possibly Afghanistan, had been packed into the truck with just 1 square metre (10 sq ft) of space per five people, police said on Sunday, as initial forensic tests indicated they had suffocated.

Hungarian police arrested a fifth suspect, a Bulgarian citizen, in connection with the deaths. Three Bulgarians and one Afghan had already been arrested.

Criticism of Europe's disparate laws and approaches to dealing with asylum seekers has mounted.

Some governments have refused to take in refugees and resisted EU proposals to agree on a common plan. Others are toughening their asylum policies and border security, sometimes because of rising anti-immigration and nationalist sentiment.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius accused eastern European states, notably Hungary, which is building a fence against migrants along its border, of a "scandalous" policy.

"They are extremely harsh. Hungary is part of Europe, which has values and we do not respect those value by putting up fences," Fabius told Europe 1 radio.

But British interior minister Theresa May blamed Europe's borderless system, known as "Schengen", for fuelling the crisis and demanded tighter EU rules on free movement.

"When it was first enshrined, free movement meant the freedom to move to a job, not the freedom to cross borders to look for work or claim benefits," May said.

"We must take some big decisions, face down powerful interests and reinstate the original principle."

Some European governments are considering amending the Schengen code, but the European Commission, the EU executive which enforces it, says there is no need to change the rules, either to improve security or control migration.

In Italy which as the entry point for many migrants has been at the forefront of the crisis, Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said the rising death toll would push EU states to confront the problem.

"It will take months, but we will have a single European policy on asylum, not as many policies as there are countries," he said.



 

@MSF_Sea [30/8/15]:  Nobody gets on a boat like this because they've heard that the UK will give them £36.95 a week

 

 

 

 

 

 

@MSF_Sea [30/8/15]:   Many politicians seem to think that building fences will stop smuggling. Do they not realise that smuggling exists because of these fences?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Syrian children disappear from Austrian hospital [BBC - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three children have been found in a critical condition after being rescued from a lorry in Austria that contained 26 migrants, police said.

The lorry was stopped in Braunau district and the Romanian driver was arrested after a chase. Those inside were said to be from Syria, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. ... [Dhaka Tribune - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mitigating Death and Inspiring Action at the World’s Deadliest Border: MOAS saves 10,000 lives during its first year [Media Release - 28/8/15]

 

 

Australia has not stopped the boats or the drownings: 1,100 Bangladeshi, Rohingya refugees die in sea in 18 months

 

 

 

Like the United States in the Caribbean and on the border with Mexico, Australia has subverted the UN Refugee Convention in South East Asia

 

 

 

Jakarta Post [28/8/15]:

 

At least 70 people are estimated to have died of starvation, dehydration, disease and abuse by the crews at sea on ships abandoned in May this year, said the UN Refugee Agency yesterday.

With the new figure, the UNHCR estimates that over 1,100 people (Bangladeshis and/or Rohingyas of Myanmar) died between January 2014 and June 2015.

Additionally, there were reports of drowning while disembarking, and many remained missing, the UNHCR said in a quarterly report of April and June.

Following the Asian migrant crisis, CARAM Asia, a regional NGO based in Malaysia, said in June that over 500 Bangladeshis were missing.

The deaths in May occurred when Thai authorities began a crackdown on illegal migration following the discovery of mass graves early May and the regional countries -- Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand -- had initially refused to accept the boatpeople drifting at sea.

In some cases, the vessels with refugees or migrants, abandoned by the human traffickers, were pushed back to the sea further.

Later, these countries rescued some 4,000 Rohingyas and Bangladeshis.

However, some 1,000 people, who were thought to be in the sea in May, remain unaccounted for.

They may have unofficially disembarked without the knowledge of the authorities, the UNHCR says.

The Bangladeshis rescued by Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Myanmar are being repatriated.

The UNHCR says between January 2014 and June 2015 approximately 94,000 refugees and migrants departed from Bangladesh and/or Myanmar.

Of those, 31,000 left in six months of this year.

“Although no departures have been reported since May, this still represents a 34 per cent increase compared to the first half of 2014,” according to the report.

...

Regional countries and the UN agencies and international community met in Thailand on May 29 and set a number of recommendations to prevent human trafficking and address its root causes.

The UNHCR, however, said, “Implementation of most of the proposals and recommendations has yet to begin, including the establishment of a joint taskforce.”

The UN refugee agency said it would continue to monitor the irregular maritime movement, and is exploring the possibility of using satellite imagery to identify smugglers' boats in the waters such as off St Martin's Island in Bangladesh, Ranong of Thailand and Langkawi of Malaysia.

 

 

 

 

The trafficking of stateless Rohingya: A problem of organised crime or state crime? Natalie Brinham [London International Development Centre - 27/8/15]:

 

... The risk of mass violence against the Rohingya and other Muslims in Rakhine State is increasing ahead of Myanmar’s scheduled elections in November, with the intensification of the de-nationalisation process and the enacting of more discriminatory laws.

If lessons from the past are learnt, there is one sure way to increase the risk of a situation of ethnic cleansing turning into one of mass killing - and that is to shut off escape routes.

Of course the killing, torture, rape and extortion of Rohingya on route to a safe country should never be allowed to go unprosecuted. However, there are real risks that come with prosecuting traffickers when the result is to close escape routes.

When anti-trafficking frameworks in the region do not provide adequate protections for victims and when organised crime is tackled without addressing the root causes of displacement - namely persecution - it is the victims that pay the ultimate price, not the traffickers.

...

 

 

 

... What we actually have now is a humanitarian crisis, and as various nations continue to violate their international obligations, more will continue to die at sea' ... Anna Nguyen  [Rappler - 22/5/15]

 

 

 

 

A groundbreaking ceremony was held on Sunday for the second Thai-Myanmar Friendship Bridge that will play a key role in the East-West Economic Corridor traversing continental Southeast Asia.

The ceremony for the bridge linking the Myanmar border town of Myawaddy and the Thai town of Mae Sot was attended by government leaders of both countries. ... [Bangkok Post - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

Japan:  120,000 protest against security bills outside Diet [Japan Today - 31/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

Malaysia:  Pressure mounts on Najib as protests spill into second day [Free Malaysia Today - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

Traffic came to almost a halt at a busy intersection of Manila's main highway on Sunday as thousands of members of a Christian group occupied the road for a third night in a row to protest alleged intrusion by the government in church affairs. ... [Channel News Asia - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

Senate Inquiry report into Nauru allegations set for release today

 

 One security staff member cut his mustache to look like Adolf Hitlers and kept it that way for several days.

 

Submission 93, Nauru Senate Inquiry

 

 

 

Nine MSN [31/8/15]:

 

 

A parliamentary committee is due to report back after hearing allegations of the waterboarding of asylum seekers on Nauru.

The inquiry into the regional processing centre has heard from a former Wilson Security guard turned whistleblower who says colleagues bragged about the events and he had seen people leaving a tent wet and coughing up water.

The company has denied the allegations.

After asking for an extension and hearing from more witnesses, senators are due to hand down their report on Monday.

 

 

 

 

Transfield announces its selection as preferred tenderer for 5 year refugee concentration camp contract [31/8/15]

 

 

 

 

CWA calls for release of women, children from detention, will lobby for Australia to honour the UN refugee convention



Letter to the Editor, Herald [30/8/15]:


Federal Liberal and Labor seem immune to the collective shame that many Australians feel at our border ‘‘security’’ measures.

We know that we are in an era of mass forced migration due to war, climate change, and other factors that cause inequities.

The Border Force Act makes it illegal for detention centre workers to report what would otherwise be an obligation to report.

An example of this is sexual abuse.

What allegedly occurred on Manus Island last month, in our name, is repulsive and will be thoroughly investigated, I hope.

The member for Manus Island in the Papua New Guinean parliament, reported to an Australian journalist about a female PNG national who was drugged and left naked in a shower cubicle. Three Australians, allegedly working for Wilson Security were subsequently quickly and quietly sent home.

Even the CWA at their annual conference last week passed a motion calling on the government ‘‘to implement policy to enable the removal of women and children from mandatory detention’’ .

They will also lobby to have Australia honour the UN declarations that we are a signatory to.

When conservative and professional people speak out, as they are doing, policies must change.

 

Anne Rooke-Frizell

 

 

 

 

PNG ignores Supreme Court injunction in attempt to forcibly deport third Iranian asylum seeker [Refugee Action Coalition, Sydney - 27/8/15]

 

 

 

 

Asylum seekers' convictions for July 2013 riots overturned by Nauru court, their current whereabouts is unknown [ABC - 24/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

Judge rules US government must swiftly release immigrant children in detention [Reuters - 22/8/15]

 

 

 

... Initially, Homeland Security officials said they were detaining the families to send a message to others in Central America to deter them from coming to the United States illegally.

In February, a federal court in Washington, D.C., ruled that strategy unconstitutional.

Officials stopped invoking deterrence as a factor in deciding whether to release mothers and children as they seek asylum in the United States. ... [New York Times - 25/7/15]

 

 

 

Federal Court blocks government from detaining asylum seekers as tactic to deter others from coming to US [ACLU Media Release - 20/2/15]

 

 



... Claims made as to the effectiveness of deterrence strategies are largely ideological and not based on empirical research. ...

 

 

There's no evidence that asylum seeker deterrence policy works [The Conversation - 24/7/12]:

 

... Policies of deterrence have become the “common sense” approach when it comes to what should be done about asylum seekers – both in terms of stopping the boats and in terms of saving lives.

The problem is that both these assumptions are largely unjustifiable based on the evidence.

 Deterring irregular border crossings does not necessarily decrease border related deaths. Evidence suggests in some contexts deterrence can simply displace deaths to another site, or changes the demographics of who dies.

In the US, research has found a relationship between deterrence policies and an increased number of border deaths.

...

As a criminologist, the idea that an illicit market, such as people smuggling, can be dealt with through enforcement-related strategies and broad deterrent messages has serious limitations.

Historically, the most effective approaches to reducing illicit markets have been found through regulatory measures and harm minimisation approaches, not deterrence.

There is simply not enough evidence that deterrence works to justify the expense and potential harm of its implementation.

 

 

 

The 'no advantage' myth in refugee processing [The Conversation - 22/1/12]

 

 

 

Australia stopped accepting UNHCR refugees in October 2014.

 

 

 

Objectivity is bullshit when you accept the secrecy and "stop the boats" lie ---->  ... I've tried very hard to keep an open mind and to keep politics out of it. My role has been to report the facts. Pushing agendas is someone else's job.

But I do get asked what I think about the whole thing so, for what it's worth, here are a few thoughts:

Stopping dangerous boat journeys that risk the lives of asylum seekers is a good thing. It would be hard to mount a humanitarian argument against it.

... One of my biggest regrets is to be leaving the Manus story: the fascinating balancing act of try to tell the story straight. ... [ABC - 30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

Protected, unaccountable Richard Marles not asked why he met with the IOM on his trip to Myanmar in the midst of the recent regional humanitarian crisis.

 

 

 

Protected, unaccountable Julie Bishop not asked how Australia can continue to justify its anti refugee policies, or to clarify remarks re what she called South East Asia's "illegal labourers".

 

 

Ambassador for People Smuggling Issues

 

 

...The International Organization for Migration (IOM), which is providing initial accommodation for the refugees and some services, yesterday suggested that media access to the refugees would not be forthcoming.

“Media exposure could potentially jeopardise protection needs of refugees and carries high level of risk to their families at home,” an IOM spokesman said.

 “While IOM can speak in general terms about what services will be available to refugees, IOM will not disclose any specific details about a refugee’s particular assistance.”

The group said last week that it had “villa-style” accommodation in Phnom Penh readied for the arrival of the four. ... [Phnom Penh Post - 28/5/15]

 

 

 

 

 

‏@RealBobKatter [31/8/15]:   A packed house for the Charters Towers Rural Debt Crisis Summit.

 

 

 

Charters Towers "Rural Crisis Summit"

 

 

 

Queensland government on Acland:  Thanks for numbering every box and putting the LNP last! Sue us if you want!  [SBS - 31/8/15]:

 

 

 

... The state government quietly released a draft environmental authority for New Hope Coal's $900 million project, northwest of Toowoomba, on Friday afternoon.

Mr Miles says the application is going through the appropriate process and anyone with concerns can now raise them in the Queensland Land Court. ...

 

 

 

Judge reserves decision re IBM-Queensland payroll dispute

 

 

 

Yahoo [27/8/15]:

 

 

 

A judge has retired to consider whether technology giant IBM can be sued over Queensland's botched health payroll system.

The Queensland government wants compensation for the $1.2 billion public administration bungle, which saw thousands of health workers underpaid, overpaid, or not paid at all.

Contractor IBM has told the Supreme Court it can't be sued under a 2010 settlement agreement, and Justice Glenn Martin reserved his decision on Thursday after a three-day trial.

 

 

 

 

 

A senior constable from the Southern Region has been stood down from official duty with the Queensland Police Service.

The officer, a 41 year-old man, is the subject of an investigation relating to inappropriately recording women on a digital recording device whilst in the performance of his duty.  ... [QPS Media - 31/8/15]

 

 

 

 

Fascism:  Surfers Paradise rickshaws hit during another dangerous, resource wasting police chase on the Gold Coast

 

Brisbane Times [31/8/15]:

 

 A man allegedly fled after being stopped by police at Surfers Paradise.

A man allegedly crashed his car into bicycle rickshaws on the Gold Coast's glitter strip then led police on an hour-long chase before hitting a power pole.

The chase started in Surfers Paradise at about 7.30pm Sunday when police intercepted the 35-year-old man's ute for an earlier traffic offence.

Police say the man then sped off, forcing officers to jump out of the way, before hitting the rickshaws and driving into the hinterland.

Police used spikes to puncture the ute's wheels, however the man continued driving for another kilometre before finally losing control and crashing into a power pole. Advertisement

No bystanders were hurt and a man will appear in the Southport Magistrates Court on Monday on three charges including dangerous driving.

 

 

 

A three-year-old boy died and six others were hospitalised when fire engulfed a unit in Beenleigh, south of Brisbane, on Sunday night.

The boy's parents suffered injuries paramedics described as traumatic and two children, believed to be a girl, 1, and a boy, 4, suffered smoke inhalation, according to the Queensland Ambulance Service. ... [Brisbane Times - 31/8/15]

 

 

 

 

 

 

Armed Robbery charge, Townsville [QPS Media  - 31/8/15]

 

 

 

Queensland Treasurer visits his constituents [Media Release -30/8/15]

 

 

 

 

Neoliberal NDIS scam:  "Peak bodies" receive $1.03 million to "expand and skill up" workforce [Media Release - 28/8/15]

 

 

 

31 August 2015

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