Day 93 refugee protests, Nauru
Today is Refugee's Day. How long should I remain in detention?
Image: @elahe_zivardar [20/6/16]
Behrouz Boochani [16/6/16]:
I took this photo with one of my bravest friends in Manus prison.
His name is Mehdi and I am proud of him because of firm reasons.
This man is an actor and played in some movies and theatres in Iran.
I remember when the local people attacked this prison on Feb 2014, killed Reza Barati and injured 100 persons. Mehdi had a great role on that time because he produced and acted some plays in Manus prison and made people happy.
People were extremely sad at that time and they lost their hope, but Mehdi brought beauty and happiness to all of us through his art.
The Australian gov took Mehdi here by force three years ago and has tried to break his spirit, but they couldn't, because Mehdi is a brave and such a strong man.
They did not give him clothes and shoes for about two years because they wanted to humiliate him.
Mehdi became sick two years ago and now he is going to lose his eye sight this is a big chance for this system to break his spirit by his sickness.
They did not provide treatment to him and put him under such pressure, but Mehdi has resisted and shouted at them that you never can break my spirit because I defeated a big ocean.
I am really proud of Mehdi and have much respect to his personality.
There are a lot of people like Mehdi in Manus prison that the Australian gov wanted to break their personality, but they could endure and I'm sure that they have a lot of beauty in their personalities to become a part of the Australian society and contribute to it.
UNHCR claims denial of access to Australia-bound boat refugees stranded in Aceh, yet the media can interrogate them about why they paid money to escape Sri Lanka [Sydney Morning Herald - 20/6/16]
Sri Lanka Air Force takes Tamil school-children on tour of army camp [Tamil Guardian - 19/6/16]
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein on Monday urged the new Government in Myanmar to take concrete steps to put an end to the systemic discrimination and ongoing human rights violations against minorities as he released a new report that highlights the plight of these minorities, in particular the large Rohingya Muslim community in Rakhine State.
The report, requested by the UN Human Rights Council in July 2015 on the situation of “Rohingya Muslims and other minorities in Myanmar”, documents a wide range of human rights violations and abuses.
The Rohingya are suffering from arbitrary deprivation of nationality, severe restrictions on freedom of movement, threats to life and security, denial of rights to health and education, forced labour, sexual violence, and limitations to their political rights, among other violations, the report says.
Four years after the 2012 violence in Rakhine State, some 120,000 Rohingya and Kaman Muslims are still living in camps for internally displaced people.
There has also been an alarming increase in incitement to hatred and religious intolerance by ultra-nationalist Buddhist organisations.
The report raises the possibility that the pattern of violations against the Rohingya may amount to crimes against humanity. ... [UN Human Rights - Asia - 20/6/16]
Global displacement at record high, but not in South East Asia say UNHCR and Australian media [ABC 20/6/16]:
... PENNY TIMMS: Simon Lewis is a lifeguard based in Melbourne.
It was that image of a drowned toddler that prompted him to go to Greece and offer his services.
SIMON LEWIS: So, in the first week of January I was in Lesbos, Greece, which is one of the Greek Islands, which is essentially the main crossing between Turkey and Europe.
PENNY TIMMS: His group rescued 517 people in just 10 days.
Mr Lewis says it's a decision that changed his life.
SIMON LEWIS: And they can't swim; most of them have never seen water, and then you have us as lifeguards having to pick and choose how we're going to help and so absorbing and looking at a boat of 200 refugees with your eyes.
You know, it's stained in my brain, it's stained in my life. You know, it forever changed me.
PENNY TIMMS: Naomi Steer says that's just one example of how Australians are offering assistance.
NAOMI STEER: Australia has a very good record in terms of resettlement overall. We're one of top countries that supports UNHCR in that way. Certainly, you know, I think those numbers could be increased, but, you know, it's an important start.
All over South East Asia the UNHCR and IOM help keep refugees out of Australia - and the media justify it [ABC - 18/6/16]: A small number of men from Nepal and India have decided to return home, more than 18 months after arriving on a small island in Micronesia.
Sixteen Nepalese men and 18 Indian men were detained at a wharf in Yap since the boat they were travelling on was detained in November 2014.
The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said seven of the Nepalese men would now return home.
When the men arrived on Yap, one of the Federated States of Micronesia in the north-western Pacific Ocean, they told local police they were hoping to reach Australia, New Zealand or the United States. ....
They have no need of our help
So do not tell me
These haggard faces could belong to you or I
Should life have dealt a different hand
We need to see them for who they really are
Chancers and scroungers
Layabouts and loungers
With bombs up their sleeves
Cut-throats and thieves
They are not
We should make them
Go back to where they came from
Share our food
Share our homes
Share our countries
Instead let us
Build a wall to keep them out
It is not okay to say
These are people just like us
A place should only belong to those who are born there
Do not be so stupid to think that
The world can be looked at another way
(Now read from bottom to top)
[Huffington Post - 24/3/16]
A considerable number of Indian students could have gained study visas with false financial documents, Immigration New Zealand says.
Immigration New Zealand is reported to have sent deportation liability notices to a number of international students studying in this country, following an investigation of visa application documents.
The department's assistant general manager, Geoff Scott, said students had to prove they had enough money to support themselves while studying in this country and in some cases that evidence had been faked.
It did not know the scale of the problem but it was worried that a considerable number of students could be affected, Mr Scott said. ... [RNZI - 20/6/16]
Tributes are flowing for a 32-year-old Landsdale man who died working on a mine near Paraburdoo last night.
Shutdown fitter Lee Buzzard died while working at Rio Tinto’s Channar Mine east of Paraburdoo at about 12.30am. ... [West Australian - 20/6/16]
Lindt Cafe siege tactical chief contradicts senior NSW police officers [Nine MSN - 20/6/16]:
The tactical commander during the Sydney siege has contradicted some of NSW Police's most senior officers, telling an inquest that ending the Lindt Cafe stand-off through direct action should have been the preferred course.
The chief inspector and Tactical Operations Unit member who also serves as an Australian special forces soldier has told the inquest into the siege that the emergency action plan, triggered after Lindt Cafe manager Tori Johnson was killed, should instead have been the last resort.
The inquest into the December 2014 siege has previously heard details of a discussion between NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione and Assistant Commissioner Mark Jenkins during which it was decided that deliberate or direct action, in which officers would storm the cafe, was to be the last resort, avoiding forcing an end to the siege.
Details of the telephone conversation between Mr Scipione and Mr Jenkins, at about 10.57pm on the night of the siege, were recorded in a police log.
Mr Jenkins was the most senior commander in charge of the police operation at the time of the telephone conversation. But in a statement tendered to the inquest on Monday, the tactical commander, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said an emergency action plan should in fact be the "last resort".
Pressed on Monday by counsel assisting the coroner, Jeremy Gormly, the officer agreed that an emergency action, which comes into force when there is imminent risk of death or serious injury is "inherently more risky" than a deliberate action.
The direct action plan would have been a proactive step to force entry at a time of the police's own choosing.
"In any action that we take there is an element of risk. However, a deliberate action would be a preferred option and potentially I might judge that when I weigh up my risk as being less risky," the tactical commander said.
Mr Gormly: "You're able to choose the time?"
Tactical commander: "And potentially a number of other methodology factors that we might be able to utilise."
Gormly: "If the EA is the last resort, a DA certainly is not, correct?"
Tactical commander: "That's correct."
Police stormed the cafe after Monis shot dead manager Mr Johnson at 2.13am.
Monis was killed by police, while hostage Katrina Dawson died after being hit by police bullet fragments.
The inquest continues.
Sydney siege inquest: NSW police commander defends M4 rifle and ammunition used by tactical officers [ABC - 20/6/16]
NSW consorting laws need change: Ombudsman [Nine MSN – 20/6/16]
The Gold Coast head of an outlawed motorcycle gang has been charged with assault and extortion. ... [Yahoo - 17/6/16]
The siege at Karalee which has lasted for close to two hours has ended.
The man at the center of the siege was led from the house in handcuffs by police. ... [Queensland Times - 20/6/16]
A former Queensland Anglican priest will spend the next three months behind bars after pleading guilty to molesting an altar boy more than 40 years ago.
Barry John Greaves, 79, fronted Brisbane District Court on Monday on one count of indecently dealing with a child under 14 years, having previously been jailed in 2009 for sexually abusing three other boys while working as an Anglican rector for the Boonah and Harrisville districts in the early 1980s.
Judge Tony Moynihan sentenced him to a head term of 12 months, to be suspended after three months have been served, describing the offence as "a gross breach of trust". [Nine MSN - 20/6/16]
Sue the Murdoch Press and run as an independent with a media reform platform [ABC - 20/6/16]:
... Christian Kunde had told ABC radio he is friends with Uthman Badar, the spokesman for Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir, but denied News Limited reports that he likened homosexuality to incest during a lecture at Sydney University.
Labor leader Bill Shorten gave a very brief response when asked about Mr Kunde today, saying: "as soon as I was made aware of this issue, I immediately accepted his resignation. Full stop."
Labor deputy leader Tanya Plibersek said Mr Kunde had resigned after being dishonest about his background. ...
How to neutralise a powerful anti-domestic violence campaigner ----> Handing the petition to Liberal Minister for Women, Michaelia Cash, Labor Senator Claire Moore and Greens leader Richard Di Natale this morning, Ms Batty said she had heard "thousands of stories" about how the Family Court judiciary allowed domestic abusers to have ongoing access to their children. ... [Sunshine Coast Daily - 20/6/16]
Husband charged with murder of missing woman Novy Chardon [MYGC - 17/6/16]
WA woman's death a 'mystery': Coroner [West Australian – 16/6/16]
A teenager has been charged after an elderly man was bashed on a bus at Palm Beach.
Detectives arrested the 16-year-old on Monday and following questioning laid a charge of grievous bodily harm. ... [MYGC - 20/6/16]
A teenager accused of kicking a security guard in the head after hopping the fence at a music festival has pleaded guilty in a Perth court this morning.
Martin Fulton, 18, from Hazlemere appeared in Perth Magistrate's Court and pleaded guilty to assault occasioning bodily harm, stealing and without lawful excuse trespassed on a place. ... [West Australian - 20/6/16]
... "I was bashed at my home on the 29th of July 2002 by members of my unit as payback for informing on the drugs activities after my name and identity became known when my security was breached by an air force officer," the declaration read. ... Government moves to strip veteran benefits from hero whistleblower [Queensland Times - 20/6/16]
Woman hit by car during dangerous, resource wasting, class and race based pursuit, Beenleigh [MYGC - 20/6/16]
A Brisbane police officer has been suspended over allegations of inappropriate sexual behaviour.
The 40-year-old male constable from the Brisbane region is facing criminal charges and will appear in Brisbane Magistrates Court on July 4.
A Queensland police spokesman was unable to confirm specific charges. [Brisbane Times - 20/6/16]
Principal tells mum: We can't teach your Down syndrome son [Queensland Times - 20/6/16]
Gold Coast criminalises skate parks [Media Release - 14/6/16]
... The Youth Affairs Network said the changes to Queensland's youth laws in Parliament on Friday were welcome but token.
Youth Affairs Network director Siyavash Doostkhah said although the changes were welcome, but the Government was not attacking the root of the problem.
"Research has clearly stated we are better off putting money and resources into the prevention area," he said.
"We just had a budget and we see again hundreds of millions of dollars spent on jails and prisons and youth detention and hardly anything on youth services to prevent this happening to start with." ... [ABC - 19/6/16]
The federal Indigenous Affairs Minister says Woorabinda has been pacified after recent unrest [ABC - 17/6/16]
Queensland principals head back to school for Cherbourg Indigenous history lesson [ABC – 17/6/16]
Brisbane will get a rainbow motif outside the Sportsman Hotel in Spring Hill after a request from the Brisbane LGBTIQ Action Group.
The footpath outside the gay venue will be painted in the colours of the pride flag to honour Brisbane's LGBTIQ community. ... [ABC - 16/6/16]
A Gold Coast businessman who underpaid security guards thousands of dollars has been hit with a record $308,000 penalty in the Federal Circuit Court.
As part of his own $51,300 penalty, Owen Ivor Jennings was ordered to personally pay back the eight guards who were underpaid more than $22,000 over three months in 2014, while his business Step Ahead Security Services was penalised a further $257,000. ... [Brisbane Times - 20/6/16]
Man dies after car hits tree near Toowoomba [Brisbane Times - 20/6/16]
Lengthy delays on M1 following serious crash, Upper Coomera [MYGC - 20/6/16]
Pedestrian hit by car in Coolangatta [MYGC – 20/6/16]
A man has been taken to hospital after being hit by a car at Labrador on the Gold Coast.
The man was reportedly struck on Imperial Parade at around 8.50pm. ... [MYGC - 18/6/16]
Woman dies after being hit by car at Emu Plains [Sydney Morning Herald – 16/6/16]
An Auckland mayoral candidate wants to impose extra rates on empty houses, commercial buildings and land to help solve the city's housing shortage.
National Party-aligned Auckland Future mayoral candidate Vic Crone said some properties were sitting unused for capital gain.
She proposed measures to make it less attractive to sit on property or unoccupied buildings for more than six months, including targeted rates, rezoning, a time limit on developments, and improving the council's consenting process.
"This is important and it is urgent. We don't have enough homes available and it is a supply and demand issue and we have to get the supply up and these measures are targeted at getting supply into the market faster. And every little bit we do will help."
The size of the targeted rates would need to be consulted on, she said. [RNZI - 19/6/16]
Norfolk pleads for Canberra to delay NSW absorption [RNZI – 18/6/16]
Three workers injured in accident at Kia plant in Mexico [Reuters – 18/6/16]
Australian coal dust exposure standards failing miners surgeons tell Medical Journal of Australia [Brisbane Times – 19/6/16]
There have been no reports of damage after a magnitude-2.7 earthquake was felt at Kilcoy, north-west of Brisbane, Geoscience Australia says. ... [ABC - 18/6/16]
Emergency situation declared at Mooloolaba, following tornado [Brisbane Times - 20/6/16]
Masses of kelp washed up on the Gold Coast Spit, just south of the sand pumping jetty - Main Beach [20/6/16]
The baby seal that washed up on Mermaid Beach has survived the night after he was collected by vets from Seaworld.
A spokesperson said the New Zealand fur seal pup had recently been weaned from his mum.
He will be kept in their vet centre and will continue to be monitored. ... [MYGC - 20/6/16]
... When the subject is the Other, the power of media to influence becomes very important and easily palpable, not only because of the sensitivity towards the issue, but also because of the fact that for a large majority of people the media not only reflect but also are the ‘creators’ of this very Otherness, of knowledge of and the attitudes towards it. ...
Media and othering: How media discourse on migrants reflects and affects society's tolerence Denitza Kamenova 
UNHCR finally speaks. Not about Australia-bound asylum seekers stranded in Aceh - but to reinforce "accept your fate" othering of refugees in South East Asia [SBS - 29/6/16]:
... There are 13,745 refugees and asylum seekers registered with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Indonesia, including nearly 2,700 children of school age.
Although technically refugee children can attend Indonesian schools, very few do, UNHCR senior protection officer Jeffrey Savage told AFP.
Language barriers, a lack of available spaces, registration problems and transport costs hinder enrolment.
The vast majority of refugee children in Indonesia go without school for years. Some are already far behind for their age, having spent a lifetime on the move.
The pupils at Learning Nest are from Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, Iraq and Sri Lanka.
Abbas Hussaini, one of the school's founders, said the students were divided by age and ability but some "had no education before they came here".
"They started at zero, from the beginning," he told AFP, gesturing to a group of students reciting the alphabet for their Afghan teacher. ...
PNG Supreme Court to enforce its ruling that Australia's refugee concentration camp on Manus Island is illegal [RNZI - 20/6/16]:
... The court has asked lawyers representing detainees and the PNG government to apply for Consequential Orders that will enforce the ruling.
One of the detainees' lawyers, Ben Lomai said he will propose a set of consequential orders.
"First of all we are seeking a release and retransfer of all the asylum seekers back to Australia within the next 30 to 60 days. Second, is that the compensation issue which basically deals with the right to personal liberty should proceed straight on to assessment if the parties could not agree on a figure."
Ben Lomai said the Supreme Court will reconvene on Tuesday, June the 21st.
Letter from men illegally incarcerated on Manus Island to PNG's Chief Justice, requests freedom and GENUINE resettlement [via Lynne Murphy - 18/5/16]
Unethical bureaucrats study and chronicle behavioural responses to Australia's war of attrition against refugees [Guardian - 20/6/16]
... His role was to counsel and care for the mental health of the Wilson Security guards. ... The worst I've seen – trauma expert lifts lid on atrocity of Australia's gulag archipelago [Guardian - 20/6/16]
UNHCR remains beyond scrutiny for their provocative April 2016 visit, which triggered self immolations on Nauru.
WHERE IS HODAN? Freedom. Justice. Resistance. Heresy for the Australian political, media and human rights establishment. @elahe_zivardar [19/6/16]: Day 92 of peaceful protest
... But it is obvious that regarding to UNHCR, absence of visiting Guantanamo, government of Australia have used the opportunity to cover some of the problems and disasters therefore it is fair for us to doubt on your visitation of Nauru after all these years for another political games. ... Open letter to UNHCR from Nauru refugees questions motive of their April visit, calls for GENUINE resettlement after three years of punishment and torture [OP Voice - 2/5/16]
WE NEED A ROYAL COMMISSION INTO OPERATION SOVEREIGN BORDERS, AND AN HONEST APPRAISAL OF AUSTRALIA'S ROLE IN EXACERBATING SOUTH-EAST ASIA'S REFUGEE CRISIS. SO WHAT DO THE GREENS ANNOUNCE? ---> Greens push for Royal Commission into children in detention [20/6/16]
Secret federal government documents cast doubt over whether Australia told Indonesia and the United Nations about a retrospective ban on taking refugees from official channels.
In November last year Australia announced it would no longer accept refugees who applied for resettlement through the UN’S refugee agency in Indonesia.
The ban applied to anyone who registered with the UNHCR from 1 July 2014. ...
20 June 2016