Super funds put more pressure on Transfield [Canberra Times - 19/8/15]





The myth of maximizing shareholder value [Naked Capitalism - 24/1/14]




... Mr Palmer claims Mr Murdoch's The Australian newspaper publishes stories to "have a go at him", telling ABC Radio on Wednesday: "That's Rupert Murdoch... only second to Joseph Goebbels in propaganda".


Yahoo [19/8/15]



Entitlements Inquiry just a Liberal and Labor cover up: Clive Palmer [Media Release - 17/8/15]


Witness recalls horror of cyclist's final moments in South Brisbane




Brisbane Times [19/8/15]:

A public servant has recalled witnessing the body of 22-year-old cyclist Rebekka Meyer torn apart by a truck, after she was hit at a notorious Brisbane intersection last year.

Clay Ablitt, a Queensland Treasury worker, was walking to work from his Fairfield home on the morning of September 11 last year, when he passed the intersection of Stanley Street and Annerley Road in South Brisbane and unwittingly witnessed the Danish national's final, brutal moments.

Giving evidence at the inquest into Ms Meyer's death at the Queensland Coroner's Court on Wednesday, a still traumatised Mr Ablitt recalled seeing Ms Meyer on her bike beside the B-double in Stanley Street, as both waited for a signal to turn right into Annerley Road.

He recalled shielding his wife from the gruesome scene that unfolded, as Ms Meyer was hit by the front of the truck and her body then went under the wheels on the passenger side, unbeknown to the truck driver.

"The rear tyre of the bicycle was hit by the front of truck and the cyclist was pushed onto right hand side and went under the front of the truck," he said.

"I noticed the accident occur and I saw her go under the front of the truck. Then, I believe I saw a part of the body separate and then I saw the rear set of tyres go over the body as the truck was continuing up Annerley Road."

The inquest also heard from a distressed Jody Jeffrey, the truck driver who said he had no idea he had hit and killed the young University of Queensland student.





...  "I also think for exactly what happened at the intersection, I doubt very much we will get a complete answer as to exactly what happened but what I do think we can get is if we can raise some awareness to the traffic here in Brisbane and maybe be a part of getting some attention to the issues there are here, so there can be better conditions for bike riders in the future," she [Tania Lousdal Jensen] said. ... Brisbane Times [19/8/15]



Fatal traffic crash, Parklands

QPS Media [19/8/15]:

A man has died following a single vehicle traffic crash in Parklands overnight.

Initial information suggests at around midnight a sedan was travelling southbound on Nambour Connection Road when it left the road and collided with the support wire of a power pole, causing the vehicle to roll.

The driver and sole occupant of the vehicle, a 42-year-old man from Woombye, was pronounced deceased at the scene.

Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen the incident or the white commodore sedan travelling on Nambour Connection Road to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.



Traffic crash, North Mackay

QPS Media [19/8/15]:

Forensic Crash Unit officers are investigating a single vehicle crash at North Mackay early this morning.

Initial inquires revel that at about 2:30am at the intersection of Sams Access Road and Harbour Road a motorcycle rider has lost control and crashed.

The rider has been transported to Mackay Hospital in a serious but stable condition.

Investigations are continuing.

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or 24hrs a day.



Traffic crash, Brandon

QPS Media [19/8/15]:

Police are appealing for witnesses after a crash this morning, which has closed the Bruce Highway at Brandon.

Around 10am, a car collided with a cane train.

No one was seriously injured during the incident.

The highway will be closed for several hours while cranes recover the locomotive.

Police would like to speak with some witnesses who were at the scene, but left before they provided police with their details.

Anyone who may have information which could assist is urged to contact Ayr police on 4790 3555.



Kathy Jackson ordered to pay $1.4m in compensation to Health Services Union

ABC [19/8/15]:

Former Health Services Union (HSU) boss Kathy Jackson has been ordered to pay $1.4 million in compensation to the union for misappropriating funds.

The union sued Ms Jackson in the Federal Court, alleging she had set up a slush fund with the proceeds of a union settlement with the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne.

They alleged she then funnelled the money into an opulent lifestyle, including significant cash withdrawals, luxury goods, valuable artwork and fine wine and dining.

She was also accused of spending up to $100,000 of HSU money on her divorce from former union figure Jeff Jackson.

She declared bankruptcy just before the Federal Court trial last month and chose not to attend.

Lawyers for the HSU said the misappropriated money was siphoned out of the National Health Development Account, set up by Ms Jackson, and that contrary to her claims, there was no evidence that all branches contributed for researching and campaigning purposes.






... Nerang Police and loss prevention officers conducted an operation at a local supermarket after a sudden increase in shop stealing offences was identified.

As a result of this operation a total of 7 people were charged.

Senior Sergeant Peter Gordon of Nerang Police said that the number of juvenile offenders was of particular concern to police.

A 12-year-old girl, two 13-year-old girls and a 16-year-old boy were all apprehended for allegedly stealing shop goods during the operation. Each juvenile has been cautioned in relation to these offences.

Additionally, a 28-year-old Nerang woman will be required to appear in the Southport Magistrates Court on August 31 charged with unlawfully taking away foodstuffs from the store.

A 28-year-old Molendinar woman will also be facing the Southport Magistrates Court on the September 8 charged with unlawfully taking away clothing items from the store.

A 44-year-old Nerang man is due to appear in the Southport Magistrates Court charged with one count each of driving a motor vehicle whilst unlicensed and possession of a dangerous drug.

Police will allege that the items of property stolen from the store included predominantly items of little value including energy drinks, foodstuffs and clothing items. ... [QPS Media - 19/8/15]






A Senate committee has recommended sweeping changes to Australia's out-of-home care system amid deep concerns about the safety of children in care.

It's made 39 recommendations, including that support for children in out-of-home care be extended until they're 21.

The committee also wants more support for at-risk families to help them keep their children at home when safe to do so, making child removal a last resort. ... [Nine MSN - 19/8/15]





Abuse part of life at Victorian youth centre [Nine MSN - 18/8/15]





Man who used chair to murder the mother of his children sentenced to more than 20 years in jail [Nine MSN - 19/8/15]





BMA Red Hill coal mine in central Queensland granted federal environmental approval

ABC [19/8/15]:

The proposed Red Hill Mining project in the Bowen Basin, central Queensland, has been given environmental approval by the Federal Government.

BMA wants to expand the longwall operations of the Broadmeadows and Goonyella Riverside mines and, in the future, to develop the Red Hill Mine near Moranbah, south-west of Mackay.

The approval allows for a longwall extension at the existing mines and a new underground mine.

The Red Hill project, which could generate up to 2,000 construction jobs, was approved by the State Government last month.

In a statement, BMA said no decision had been made about the timing of the new underground mine included within the Red Hill Mining Lease EIS.

It said the approval gave certainty for the continuation of mining at existing operations, which would "protect current jobs at a very challenging time for the coal industry".

"Whilst BMA's plans for a new mining development on the Red Hill site were suspended in 2012 due to market conditions, recent approvals also provide the foundation for development planning at the adjacent Goonyella Riverside and Broadmeadow mines, including future extensions into the Red Hill Mining Lease," the statement said.

The federal approval will not expire until 2052.

Yahoo [19/8/15]:

Queensland's government admits it can't stop the repeal of federal laws allowing activists to use courts to hold up major projects.

The federal government wants to amend the laws and State Development Minister Anthony Lynham has conceded their area of responsibility.

""I support the community's right to object, we are a democratic society, but ... that's a matter for the Commonwealth," he told a budget estimates hearing on Wednesday.



China slowdown catches Glencore by surprise as profits collapse [Canberra Times – 19/8/15]





I welcome the appointment of Professor Gregory McCarthy as the BHP Billiton Chair of Australian Studies at Peking University. ... [Minister for Foreign Affairs Media Release - 18/8/15]





Renewable Energy


Senate Hansard [18/8/15]:

Senator LAZARUS (Queensland) (14:28): My question is for the honourable Senator Birmingham, representing the Minister for the Environment. Far North Queensland boasts natural wonders including the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. The region desperately needs renewable energy projects to provide reliable, local and green energy solutions. A consortium of local investors have funded a proposed Cairns Mount Emerald wind farm project. The project was submitted to Mr Hunt's office for EIS approval in November 2014. To date, approval has not been provided. Could you please explain whether Mr Hunt is delaying consideration and why this project has not been approved?

Senator BIRMINGHAM (South Australia—Assistant Minister for Education and Training) (14:30): * BLAH BLAH BLAH BLURT BLURT BLAH BLAH ***

Senator LAZARUS (Queensland) (14:32): Mr President, I ask a supplementary question. I can only hope that the government become as thorough with mines as they are with wind farms. The Mount Emerald wind farm project will provide power in the Cairns region for up to 75,000 thousand homes a year. Does the government understand the benefit that renewable energy provides to the country and why it is so important that projects of this nature are given prompt consideration?

Senator BIRMINGHAM (South Australia—Assistant Minister for Education and Training) (14:32): ** BLAH BLAH BLAH BLURT BLURT BLURT* *

Senator LAZARUS (Queensland) (14:34): Mr President, I ask a further supplementary question. In view of the government's approach to dirty coal in favour of renewable energy, is the government deliberately delaying the approval of renewable energy projects to harm the renewable energy sector?

Senator BIRMINGHAM (South Australia—Assistant Minister for Education and Training) (14:34): * ** BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH ***





… Queensland greyhound trainer Tom Noble will go on trial in October for his alleged breaches of animal protection laws.

The 68-year-old banned trainer fronted the Ipswich Magistrates Court on Wednesday, as a host of fellow trainers also had their matters heard.

He was granted a trial date of October 22 for one count of breaching a duty of care to animals and two counts of "keeping or using kill or lure for blooding or coursing".

The trial is scheduled to only run for one day. ... [Yahoo - 19/8/15]





WA prisoner crushed to death: report



Nine MSN [19/8/15]:


A prisoner has been crushed to death by a truck at WA's maximum security Hakea prison.

The man, believed to be aged in his 40s, died after a reversing truck swung around and pinned him against a wall at the Canning Vale facility, the Seven Network reports.

He was taken to hospital and later died of his injuries.








Over 1,000 black activists, artists, scholars, students and organisations signed the 2015 Black Solidarity Statement with Palestine:



... We know Israel’s violence toward Palestinians would be impossible without the US defending Israel on the world stage and funding its violence with over $3 billion annually. We call on the US government to end economic and diplomatic aid to Israel. We wholeheartedly endorse Palestinian civil society’s 2005 call for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel and call on Black and US institutions and organizations to do the same. We urge people of conscience to recognize the struggle for Palestinian liberation as a key matter of our time.


As the BDS movement grows, we offer G4S, the world’s largest private security company, as a target for further joint struggle. G4S harms thousands of Palestinian political prisoners illegally held in Israel and hundreds of Black and brown youth held in its privatized juvenile prisons in the US. The corporation profits from incarceration and deportation from the US and Palestine, to the UK, South Africa, and Australia. We reject notions of “security” that make any of our groups unsafe and insist no one is free until all of us are.





The Australian Federal Police dumped a $145 million plan to fight crime using software developed in the Middle Eastern flashpoints of Gaza and the West Bank after an intervention by Finance Department boss Jane Halton.

The increasingly powerful Finance secretary wrote to AFP Commissioner Andrew Colvin in January after her department's Major Project's Review team completed an appraisal of the police force's plans to buy the Israeli-made policing software. ... [Canberra Times - 19/8/15]




Even more troubling than the staggering figures are the tragedy’s human dimensions and governments’ hesitance to address the plight of refugees stranded in horrific conditions along coastlines and borders worldwide.


The global refugee crisis: Can we ignore it much longer? Katherine Tan [Foreign Policy Association - 17/8/15]:


... These circumstances make a compelling case for developed countries to offer long-term resettlement to the Rohingya. However, Australia, one of the Asian-Pacific region’s wealthiest countries, has categorically refused to resettle any Rohingya, despite urging from the UNHCR.

“Australia will do absolutely nothing that gives any encouragement to anyone to think that they can get on a boat, that they can work with people smugglers to start a new life,” said Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

Abbott’s callous statement ignores the fact that most Rohingya aren’t voluntary migrants, but victims of ethnic cleansing fleeing a state that has branded them pariahs. India and China, regional giants that share borders with Myanmar, also remain on the sidelines, despite holding significant sway with Myanmar’s government.

The international community has resettled refugees en masse before, most notably after the Indochina Wars of the mid-1970s, when the United States, Australia, Canada, and others resettled more than 3 million refugees from Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos.

With such a precedent, one must ask why states are failing to act decisively now. Indeed, they may soon have little choice. Even if humanitarian motives aren’t enough to compel action, these crises’ destabilizing effects may well prove difficult to ignore.





Qatar gives Indonesia $49m to host Rohingya refugees [Jakarta Globe - 29/5/15]:


Foreign Affairs Minister Retno L.P. Marsudi said that at a meeting in Doha, she had spoken with the emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, about the regional efforts to help the refugees.

Most if not all of the people made it to Indonesian shores in recent weeks are Muslims.

Indonesia currently receives aid from the International Organization of Migration, which has allocated $26 million to "help" refugees stranded in Southeast Asia.

“The donation is in a form of financial aid from Qatar to Indonesia to help cover expenses allocated for Rohingya refugees,” Tamim said on Friday, as quoted by newsportal

President Joko Widodo said last week that Indonesia would need international aid to cover expenses it would incur in hosting refugees, most of whom are fleeing persecution in Buddhist-majority Myanmar.




ALP and LNP vote against Greens Senate motion to save Rohingya [Senate Hansard - 24/6/15]:

Senator HANSON-YOUNG (South Australia) (15:39): I move:

That the Senate—

(a) expresses concern at the disturbing reports aired on the Four Corners television program on 22 June 2015;

(b) notes:

(i) that only 412 Rohingyans have been resettled in Australia through Australia's humanitarian program since 2008, and

(ii) the Government's recent refusal to provide assistance or resettlement for Rohingyans currently in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, and stranded at sea off these three countries; and

(c) urges the Government to:

(i) contribute to the search and rescue mission for thousands of migrants, including Rohingyans, currently stranded at sea,

(ii) resettle some of the Rohingyan migrants rescued by Indonesia and Malaysia, and

(iii) resettle an increased number of Rohingyans in the 2015 humanitarian program, increasing the number of the program if necessary.

The PRESIDENT: The question is that the motion be agreed to.


The Senate divided [15:39]

(The President—Senator Parry)


Ayes ...................... 13

Noes ...................... 33

Majority ................. 20


Di Natale, R

Hanson-Young, SC

Lazarus, GP

Ludlam, S

Madigan, JJ

Milne, C

Rhiannon, L

Rice, J

Siewert, R (teller)

Waters, LJ

Whish-Wilson, PS

Wright, PL

Xenophon, N


Back, CJ

Bilyk, CL

Brown, CL

Bullock, J.W.

Bushby, DC

Cameron, DN

Canavan, M.J.

Colbeck, R

Edwards, S

Fawcett, DJ

Fifield, MP

Gallagher, KR

Heffernan, W

Ketter, CR

Leyonhjelm, DE

Lindgren, JM

Lines, S

Marshall, GM

McEwen, A (teller)

McGrath, J

McKenzie, B

McLucas, J

Moore, CM

Nash, F

O'Neill, DM

Parry, S

Peris, N

Polley, H

Ruston, A

Ryan, SM

Urquhart, AE

Wang, Z

Williams, JR

Question negatived.



Forgotten plight of asylum seekers and refugees in Indonesia




Hazara Asylum Seekers [16/8/15]:

These photos are from Balikpapan detention centre (in Indonesia) where more than 285 people, reportedly Hazaras and mostly refugees have staged protest against manhandling and their mistreatment.

Sources in the centre are reporting that a critically ill refugee had not been allowed to be attended by doctor.

When his fellow refugees insisted for his treatment, the staff at the said hospital resorted to severely beating them.

Asylum seekers and refugees have now staged hunger strike and are seeking UNHCR and IOM's attention to their deteriorating situation, but even after four days, to no avail.

No one from UNHCR or IOM has yet visited them.

Reports of torture and abuse in Indonesian detention centres are not surprising neither new. In February 2012, a young Hazara aged 16, Taqi, was severely beaten to death by Indonesian guards.

Due to lack of interest from Indonesia's mainstream media and Australian media's limited attention to only asylum seekers and refugees living in and around Jakarta, plight of an overwhelming number of asylum seekers and refugees detained in remote detention centres across Indonesia remains unreported.

Here is Human Rights Watch's report on Indonesian detention centres ...





Australia stopped accepting UNHCR refugees in October 2014, the ones who do manage to get here - we torture [SBS - 10/7/15]:



... Comment is being sought from now Immigration Minister Peter Dutton and the UNHCR.



UNHCR responds to allegations that US military style torture techniques are being used on refugees incarcerated in Australia's concentration camp on Nauru



Yahoo [19/8/15]:




The UN's refugee agency is concerned about what it says are "worrying issues" emerging from a Senate inquiry into abuse allegations at the Nauru immigration detention centre.

A security firm whistleblower told the inquiry asylum seekers were subjected to water-boarding.

UNHCR regional representative Thomas Albrecht told AAP it was difficult to verify whether such claims were an exaggeration or had real substance because of secrecy surrounding the centre's operation.





This evening Australian senators argued over definitions regarding the use of force as part of the Migration Amendment (Maintaining the Good Order of Immigration Detention Facilities) Bill 2015 second reading debate.



Does the UNHCR have anything to say about that?



That Australian senators can take this legislation seriously reveals the utter degeneracy of our political system.



Guardian [VIDEO - 23/1/15]:



... Video footage obtained by Guardian Australia shows dozens of asylum seekers and refugees held in a single, windowless prison cell.

There is no furniture in the cell. Almost all the men lie close together and motionless in tight lines on the floor.

A man speaking on the video – whose voice has been altered to avoid identification – alleged the men were beaten by security guards employed by Wilson and by police while in custody.

“They have beaten everyone in this camp. We are totalling 58 people, they beat the shit out of all of us,” he said.

The video shows marks on some of the men’s bodies.

It ends abruptly when a noise is heard, apparently outside the cell.





Pacific media watchdog claims Nauru Facebook blackout a rights threat [ABC – 8/5/15]





No UNHCR. No journalists. No lawyers. No justice.


Australia's getting away with this.


What next?



Australia did this.  Immigration Minister Peter Dutton is responsible. ---->   This is a jail cell some of the female refugees were imprisoned for 30 hours and given only one bottle of water to share. ... [Refugees on Nauru - 5/3/15]





"We are dying. Don't be spectators." Photos, video from Nauru refugee protest [Refugee Action Coalition, Sydney - 27/2/15]






Record civilian casualties and widening conflict stretch humanitarian capacities in Afghanistan [UN Media Release - 18/8/15]





The United States has more than doubled the number of its military staff “providing intelligence, munitions and midair refueling” for Saudi Arabia’s airstrikes on Yemen.

The number of so-called American advisors working at joint military operations centers in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain has risen from 20 to 45, The Los Angeles Times reports.

In addition, US warships have also helped enforce a naval blockade in the Gulf of Aden and southern Arabian Sea. ... [Press TV - 19/8/15]





15 killed in Saudi airstrikes on Yemen residential area [Press TV - 18/8/15]





Shoura visit boosts Saudi-Australia ties [Arab News – 18/8/15]:

The visit by Saudi Shoura Council members to Australia would help boost ties between the two countries, said Abdullah Al-Asheikh, the Shoura speaker, in Sydney on Tuesday.

Al-Asheikh is leading a Shoura delegation invited by the Australian parliament. He was welcomed at the airport by Saudi Ambassador for Australia and New Zealand, Nabil bin Mohammed Al-Saleh, and senior Australian government officials.

During his stay, Al-Asheikh will hold talks with the head of the Australian Parliament Tony Smith, Senate President Stephen Parry, Governor General Peter Cosgrove, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Minister of Trade and Investment Andrew Robb.

Al-Asheikh said the visit comes as the Kingdom, under the leadership of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman, seeks to strengthen and develop bilateral relations based on the shared experiences gained as G20 members.






Libya: UN human rights office alarmed by reports of ISIL-led violence, reprisal killings [Media Release - 18/8/15]





Islamic State (IS) militants beheaded an antiquities scholar in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra and hung his body on a column in a main square of the historic site, Syria's antiquities chief said on Tuesday. ... [Reuters - 18/8/15]





United States, "allies" continue bombing Iraq and Syria



US Department of Defense [18/8/15]:


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 and fighter aircraft conducted three airstrikes in Syria:

-- Near Hasakah, two airstrikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL berm and an ISIL fighting position.

-- Near Kobani, an airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL motorcycle.

Airstrikes in Iraq

Attack, bomber, fighter, and fighter-attack aircraft conducted 17 airstrikes in Iraq, coordinated with the Iraqi government:

-- Near Rutbah, three airstrikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and an ISIL checkpoint and destroyed an ISIL bulldozer and an ISIL excavator.

-- Near Beiji, two airstrikes struck an ISIL large tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL artillery piece, an ISIL building and two ISIL vehicles.

-- Near Haditha, two airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL mortar system and an ISIL fighting position.

-- Near Makhmur, three airstrikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and an ISIL staging area and destroyed an ISIL fighting position, an ISIL heavy machine gun and an ISIL light machine gun.

-- Near Mosul, an airstrike struck an ISIL tank and destroyed an ISIL trailer.

-- Near Ramadi, two airstrikes struck two ISIL large tactical units and destroyed six ISIL buildings, two ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL recoilless rifle.

-- Near Sinjar, an airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL fighting position and an ISIL light machine gun.

-- Near Tal Afar, two airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL artillery piece, an ISIL building, an ISIL fighting position and an ISIL weapons cache.

-- Near Tuz, an airstrike destroyed 21 ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL tunnel system.



Transgender woman killed after being run over multiple times in parking lot at Kansas City church [KCTV5 – 18/8/15]





Palestinian hunger striker Muhammad Allan on Tuesday woke from a coma after four days and immediately pledged to resume fasting if Israel did not resolve his case within 24 hours, Palestinian officials said.  ... [Maan - 18/8/15]





Israelis celebrate child slaughter outside hunger striker’s hospital [The Electronic Intifada - 18/8/15]





After new displacements, UN officials call for an immediate halt to demolitions in the West Bank [Media Release - 18/8/15]:


Senior United Nations officials are calling today for an immediate freeze on demolitions in the West Bank, after dozens of structures were demolished yesterday by Israeli authorities in Palestinian Bedouin refugee communities, near East Jerusalem.

“A total of 22 structures were demolished in four communities, displacing 78 Palestinians, including 49 children, the vast majority of whom are Palestine refugees,” said a joint statement issued today by the Coordinator for Humanitarian and UN Development Activities for the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Robert Piper, and the Director of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) Operations in the West Bank, Felipe Sanchez. ...






Reports in Nigeria say as many as 60 people may have been killed after a raid on a village in the north-east by suspected Boko Haram militants.

The attack on Kukuwa in Yobe state happened last Thursday but details have only just emerged from survivors. Some of the villagers who died are said to have drowned while fleeing gunmen.

The BBC's Nigeria correspondent says the fact that it took five days for any news to come out demonstrates how dire the security situation is in Yobe.

Eyewitnesses told AFP news agency that dozens of militants arrived in the village on motorcycles and began shooting the residents.

"They opened fire instantly, which forced residents to flee. Unfortunately many residents who tried to flee plunged into the river which is full from the rain. Many drowned," Modu Balumi, a resident, told AFP.  ... [BBC - 18/8/15]






... Amanda fled her home in Nigeria after Boko Haram kidnapped her family and slaughtered many of her friends and neighbors.  She hasn't seen or heard from her relatives in months, and she fears that they, too, have been killed.


Often, she regrets fleeing and leaving her family behind. The thought of never knowing their fate is almost unbearable. But she says her mother and father would have wanted her to go to Europe. ...




Voices from the sea:   Fleeing war and hunger, refugees crossing the Mediterranean explain how they got here [Mashable - 18/8/15]





6 Syrian refugees - including an infant - drown off Turkish coast trying to reach Greece [Yahoo - 18/8/15]:


... Greece's coast guard rescued 576 migrants in 23 search-and-rescue operations off the islands of Lesbos, Chios, Samos, Agathonisi and Kos in the last 24 hours alone.

The U.N. refugee agency reported Tuesday that the number of refugees and migrants arriving in Greece by sea this year is now over 158,450, including over 50,000 people in July alone.

That monthly number is greater than the 43,500 who arrived in Greece for all of 2014, it said.

UNHCR spokesman William Spindler told reporters in Geneva that last week alone, nearly 21,000 people arrived in Greece. Greek authorities said Tuesday they are planning to use a ferry currently docked at the island of Kos to transport up to 2,500 migrants to a northern port.

The Greek Merchant Marine Ministry said the Eleftherios Venizelos is expected to leave Kos by Wednesday morning to travel to Thessaloniki, from where the migrants can continue their odyssey toward asylum in wealthier European countries, travelling through the Balkans.

The ferry, which has served as a temporary migrant screening center, has about 1,700 people on board and will pick up hundreds more from other islands on the way.







Paradise Lost:  Nauru refugee detention center in focus of government inquiry [VIDEO - RT - 17/8/15]






Superannuation Fund Investments in the Detention of Asylum Seekers UNISUPER TRANSFIELD [Divestment Brochure Crossborder Operational Matters - 2014]






Australia:  Major superannuation fund divests from the immigration detention industry





As well as blacking out any reporting on the soon to passed Migration Amendment (Maintaining the Good Order of Immigration Detention Facilities) Bill 2015, the National Broadcaster appears to be withholding news of this achievement and that it was largely a result of the actions of a hardworking bunch of grassroots activists.



The Australian human rights establishment have NOTHING to say on this VICTORY FOR HUMAN RIGHTS - except "Thanks HESTA" - while they maintain their silence on the the passage of laws which will allow detention centre guards to kill refugees and not be held criminally liable?



‏@GetUp [19/8/15]:   A huge congratulations and thank you to HESTA for dumping Transfield over detention centre abuses. ...



Perhaps they don't want Australians getting the idea that genuine grassroots action can actually have an impact?



World Humanitarian Day 2015: Bake a cake as your country ignores regional human rights atrocities and subverts the UN convention by repelling, incarcerating and torturing refugees



Morocco World News [18/8/15]:

A few months ago, I wrote a note on the savagery with which minority Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar are treated at the hands of their countrymen and countrywomen.

What I did not address at the time was the manipulation of the Buddhist religious institution and its monks as part of the cleansing operation so as not to jeopardize ongoing peaceful but ineffective attempts to ameliorate the situation

During this time, the whole world has been watching. Footage and pictures smuggled from the site of the slaughter did not make it into major media to raise awareness among the international community at all, much less to the extent that a lost pet in some chic neighborhood of a small town in France, the UK, the USA, or Saudi Arabia would have.

I have to admit that I know next to nothing about Buddhism and Buddhists and I have to add that I have seen so much over-generalization, amalgamation, and misinterpretation of religions around the world that I refrain from committing those blunders. I have, however, seen and heard individual monks, who are so obviously well respected and followed in their country, inviting their followers to attack and chase their Muslim countrymen and countrywomen out of their land, that I can but be convinced that hatred is being created and crimes against humanity are being committed while no one lifts a finger to help.

I also have to admit that while I do understand fully the rage inside me at the unconditional support of the international community for the State of Israel and the way they condone Israel’s crimes against humanity and unlawful occupation of the lands of others, I fail to understand why this same international community has been deaf to the cries and calls of the Rohingya Muslims.

Why are the oldest and mightiest democracies of this international community — which never stop reminding the smallest ones of human rights and who reserve the harshest punishments for those who ill-treat animals and trees — pretend that nothing is happening. What they are afraid of, and what kind of deal they are protecting I have no idea. No, that’s not true. Actually, I have a pretty good picture but I am afraid the aperture of my lens might be not wide and slow enough to capture all the factors involved.

The reports and the pictures relayed about the continuing massacre are so painful and savage that one can think of them as the worst humanity has suffered since the European crusades and the Spanish inquisition.

A whole population a Muslim minority, is being decimated and neither the Muslims of the world nor any one else is moving in to put an end to the crime.

The only hope that remains is an appeal to civil society.

People should stand up, denounce the atrocities, raise consciousness, and press their governments to take appropriate actions.

For less than this, people have called for much more: economic measures, no-fly zones, diplomatic pressure, etc.

We should let them know that the Rohingya Muslims are humans too.

Abdellatif Zaki is a professor of Languages and Communication at Institut Agronomique et Vétérinaire Hassan II, Rabat, Morocco. He has taught introductory courses to the study of the Koran and Islam as well as courses on various intercultural issues.





Seriously? Senator Hanson-Young is more concerned about being monitored than the torture of refugees?





Spying is run of the mill kind of stuff on Nauru and Manus. 


The Greens and the media are easing the passage of the Migration Amendment (Maintaining the Good Order of Immigration Detention Facilities) Bill 2015 by deflecting attention away from what is happening to incarcerated refugees (and that this is bipartisan), and focussing on spying.


... Mark [Davis] contends with having his footage deleted by the authorities, a bugged car and endless bureaucracy ...  [VIDEO - Keep Out! - SBS Dateline - 28/3/13]




Russian photographer reports from Nauru ----> Dream Turned Nightmare for Boat Refugees Seeking Asylum in Australia [RIA Novosti - 2/11/14]:


... Despite apparent attempts to prevent human rights activists and journalists from coming to the island, Russian photographer Vlad Sokhin managed to visit Nauru as a tourist. He has recently shared a heart-breaking account of what it is like to live on the islands as a refugee in Russian Reporter magazine.

“Everyone is spying on us here. Every our step is reported to the police. We are strictly forbidden from talking to foreigners or journalists,” Mujtaba, a Shia refugee from Pakistan, told Sokhin.





Australia's 'beautiful prison' in Papua New Guinea, Fariba Sahraei [VIDEO – BBC – 18/2/15]




... When planes started arriving with transferees we were not allowed to go to the airport, and to this day we are not allowed to go into the centre, and we don't know what is actually happening there. ... Ruth Mandrakamu - Mayor, Lorengau, Manus Island  Strangers in Paradise [VIDEO - East 101 - Al Jazeera - 24/10/14]





19 August 2015