There was a series of reports of an outbreak of Dengue fever on Nauru across late February and early March this year.

A report in The Guardian stated that 70 people had been afflicted, including 10 refugees. 

A tipster has told us that someone on the island has informed them the outbreak has has actually resulted in deaths of Nauruan citizens.

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection confirmed to Crikey that the department was aware of an increased number of cases of Dengue fever, and asserted that appropriate treatment was being provided, but did not confirm whether there had been deaths.

They directed us to the government of Nauru for exact numbers of cases.

The Nauruan government was contacted but did not respond before deadline. [Crikey - 24/3/17]



SBS produces more "boat people deterrence" propaganda featuring a cast of dodgy performers and one "refugee entrepreneur" [23/3/17]



The top United Nations human rights body agreed on Friday to send an international fact-finding mission to investigate widespread allegations of killings, rape and torture by security forces against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar's Rakhine state. ... [Reuters - 24/3/17] 



@Aungaungsittwe [24/3/17]:  Many #Rohingyas fr TinMay village of Buthidaung left village to avoid torture of Adjutant HtooNaing who hs plan to kill or force to leave ...



As Myanmar's western backed Rohingya genocide continues, regional fascists dance around issue with faux "assistance" ---> ... Deputy Foreign Minister Abdurrahman Mohammad Fachir said Indonesia opts for an inclusive and comprehensive approach to the conflict in Rakhine.

"Everyone must be involved—the government, human rights (groups), and the people of Myanmar," he said in Jakarta Friday, March 17. ... [TEMPO - 17/3/17]



Woodside notice of 2017 AGM - 5 May 2017



Actor Rajinikanth to hand over keys to 150 homes built for Tamils by the Gnanam Foundation [The Hindu - 23/3/17]:


... When asked about the project, Raju Mahalingam, creative head, Lyca Productions, said that the entire project has been completed in a period of one-and-a-half years.

“After MGR, no mass hero of that stature has visited and spoken in Jaffna,” he added.

These homes have been built in Chinna Tampan and Puliyankulam regions in northern Sri Lanka.

On April 10, Rajinikanth will be in Vavuniya to unveil the new homes and he will also plant tree saplings.

A press statement released by Lyca Productions said that C.V. Vigneswaran, Chief Minister, Northern Province, Tamil National Alliance leader R. Sampanthan, Malaysian Senate leader S. Vigneswaran, British all-party parliamentary Tamil council’s leader James Ferry and Justice Committee member Keith Vaz will be present at the presentation ceremony. ...



US officials claim Canadian was a people-smuggling profiteer. He says he worked for free [National Post - 17/3/17]:


...  Even after Sri Lanka’s long civil war came to an end in May 2009, life was hard.

Hoping their son could have a better life, one young man’s family pooled their savings and he flew from Colombo to Haiti, which is where he met Chelliah.

“There were people he was working with also,” said the Sri Lankan refugee claimant, now living in the U.S., who asked not to be identified because he feared for the safety of his family.

“But we only knew his name.”

Chelliah flew him to the Bahamas, where he boarded a boat that crossed the Straits of Florida to Miami, which is where it all fell apart.

FBI agents had been working with a confidential source who knew Chelliah.

In fact, the source had been smuggled into the U.S. by Chelliah.

The source had remained in contact with him, and was passing information to the investigators. In July 2010, the source told his FBI handlers that Chelliah would soon be sending a load of migrants by boat.

Six Sri Lankans were subsequently caught in West Palm Beach.

One of them identified Chelliah as his smuggler, the FBI wrote in an affidavit.


 Chelliah had agreed to meet a National Post reporter for an interview at his prison but the warden would not allow it. He later stopped contacting the newspaper, which has been unable to locate him.

His brother declined to comment.

 The migrants who were caught in Miami did not fare well.

They were detained by U.S. immigration for several years before returning home.

The one who spoke to the Post was held for five years and was still awaiting a decision on his U.S. asylum claim.

Asked how he felt about the smuggler, his reaction was mixed.

“When we were in jail, no one helped us. When we were in the Bahamas, no one helped us. But in getting us from Sri Lanka all the way here, of course we have to be grateful to him.”

The migrant lives in New York. He has been working as a cleaner and does odd jobs to extra earn money, some of which he sends to his parents in Sri Lanka.

“I also borrow money from friends to send home,” he said in an interview conducted in Tamil by Toronto-based researcher Amarnath Amarasingam, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Strategic Dialogue.

“I don’t want my parents to know the truth, that after all they did to get me here, and after all I struggled to get here, I’m still making pennies. I want them to feel that it was worth it. My friends understand and lend me what they can.”



... WikiLeaks releases Vault 7 "Dark Matter", which contains documentation for several CIA projects that infect Apple Mac firmware (meaning the infection persists even if the operating system is re-installed) developed by the CIA's Embedded Development Branch (EDB).

These documents explain the techniques used by CIA to gain 'persistence' on Apple Mac devices, including Macs and iPhones and demonstrate their use of EFI/UEFI and firmware malware. ... [WikiLeaks - 23/3/17]



@wikileaks [23/3/17]:  Full recording: WikiLeaks press conference this afternoon on CIA / Vault7 / "Dark Matter" ...



@wikileaks [22/3/17]:  How to tell if the CIA is listening to your Samsung Smart TV: The blue light on the back of the TV is still on. ...



@wikileaks [22/3/17]:  DW interview with WikiLeaks' editor Julian Assange on CIA #Vault7, Syria & Trump (in English & Arabic)



@wikileaks [22/3/17]:  ... U.S. House Intelligence Committee confirms U.S. spies intercepted Trump team communications "on numerous occasions" ...



Who's worse, the fascist George Brandis or the fascist hypocrite Mark Dreyfus - and his army of noisy ALP yes bots?  ---> ... The focus of commentators on Legal Aid has meant that some crucial cuts in the Attorney-General’s budget have slipped under the radar.

Among them is a cut of $5 million from Australia’s contribution to the International Criminal Court, reducing it to the minimum compulsory amount for Australia as a member state of the court.

The Human Rights Education Program has also been slashed, saving $1.5 million over three years, ostensibly to “remove an overlap with programs run by the Australian Human Rights Commission.”

The sharpest sting in this cut is not the loss of the education programs that would otherwise have run, but the signal of the Gillard Government’s regard for human rights. ... [New Matilda - 24/5/13]



Australia's refugee concentration camps on Nauru and Manus Island were reopened by the ALP under the watchful guidance of the United States (i.e. Hillary Clinton's State Department) [Buzzfeed - 4/6/16]:


Star Labor candidate Peter Khalil has confirmed he acted as a protected source for the US government, feeding them information about Labor’s asylum seeker policy.

Khalil served as a foreign policy adviser to former prime minister Kevin Rudd back in 2007 and was also director of national security policy for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq from 2003-04.  ...



ABC's Kim Landers and Bathurst "community leaders" want people who travelled by boat to seek asylum in Australia to fuck off and die.



"SHUT DOWN! OFFSHORE!"  Political prisoners of the Australian government and opposition protest on Nauru, May 2016 



Australia's atrocities against refugees continue unopposed and unscrutinised as the ABC and Bathurst "community leaders" tout the utility of dumping handpicked Syrians in regional areas [24/3/17]



Waiting for publishers, promoters and profiteers of They Cannot Take The Sky to call on the government and opposition to end Australia's anti-refugee indefinite detention, exile and refoulement policy.



How is it that the European branch of Save the Children are in favour of rescuing refugees, while the Australian branch isn't?


Woman gives birth to baby girl on refugee rescue boat in Mediterranean Sea [The Independent - 21/3/17]:


... MSF is deploying a second vessel to the search and rescue zone lying to the north of Libya’s volatile coast, with the ship expected to start operations on Wednesday morning.

The Prudence will be able to transport 600 people with emergency capacity for another 400, as well as 13 MSF staff members manning an emergency department, clinic, pharmacy and morgue.

Save the Children is also launching a rescue boat in April, while numerous smaller charities from across Europe are working alongside naval forces and cargo ships enlisted for missions by the coordination centre in Rome.



All aboard the bipartisan ship [Overland - 11/8/15]:


... Writing in The Australian, Save the Children Australia CEO Paul Ronalds makes a more reluctant argument for the same conclusion: that organisations supporting refugees should embrace the opportunity for bipartisan consensus by abandoning active support for the principle of non-refoulement:


Although we may not like turnbacks, it is clear the policy is here to stay.

Now we and other advocates for the rights of asylum-seekers must look beyond this aspect of the policy and concentrate our efforts on implementing a genuine regional framework, which we have long called for. <---  Seen any evidence of them doing this yet?


As NGOs have taken on major government contracts for refugee and asylum-seeker services, such as the $19m contract Save the Children currently holds with the detention facilities on Nauru, these organisations have become structurally invested in maintaining government control over asylum seekers.

But liberal humanitarians are more deeply invested in government control over asylum seekers than can be explained by any direct financial benefit.

They may disagree with right-wing conservatives on how many refugees should be accepted, or the details of how those who are turned away should be treated, but they share the premise stated by John Howard during the Tampa crisis: ‘We will decide who comes here and the manner in which they come.’  ...



Who gains from efforts to depoliticise a political act?



Political prisoners of the Australian government and opposition protest on Nauru, April 2016





Who is responsible for inciting this violence in PNG? --> 97 suspects in 2014 Sakiko massacre plead not guilty to murder [The National - 24/3/17]:


Ninety-seven suspects in the alleged killing of seven people in Raicoast pleaded not guilty in the Madang National Court yesterday.

They were alleged to be part of a group called the hausman that declared war against sorcerers in their area in the Naho Rawa LLG in April 2014 and went around killing people, including children.

Justice David Cannings read their verdict and said the 97 were each charged with seven counts of brutally murdering seven people in a one-day attack.

April 14, 2014 became a worst day for people in the Sakiko village located at the back of the Ramu Sugar Township.

According to police, the 97 men alleged to be part of a group that walked more than 13km from Ranara to Sakiko with only one common interest and that was to kill the suspected sorcerers who had fled to Sakiko.

People from the Gomumu, Saranga, Niningo and other areas in Tauta are in Naho Rawa LLG in fear of continuous deaths which they suspected were caused by sorcerers.

Cannings read that at 6am on April, 2014, the first suspects attacked was Sike Wamne from Jiwaka, who was going to work on the sugarcane farm.

They shot him with a bow and arrow and when he fell they chopped him with bush knives and axes.

The second Nick Uria was killed at Sakiko village when he tried to run away.

A member of the group shot him in the eye with an arrow and when he fell the others surrounded and chopped him on various parts of his body he died too.

Yambung Nawoya was chopped on the face, his skull split open and he died.

The fourth Bermo Tipupu, who tried to fight back, was over powered and had his skull also split open.

Baupa Aki, an old man who was chopped all over and thrown into a house which they set fire and he burnt with the house.

The sixth person killed was a three-year-old boy who was carried by his mother and was running away with her other children.

The boy was pulled off from his mother and chopped into pieces.

The seventh person was a five-year-old boy who also tried to escape but was caught and chopped and he died instantly.

Cannings read their demise and the whole 97 said they understood the charges but pleaded not guilty.

The trial will continue today with the tendering of evidences.



National Cultural Commission says Christian fundamentalist "Burn the Witch" National Day of Repentance incites violence against PNG traditional culture [PNG Loop - 25/8/15]



Thousands of people brave the heat of Port Moresby and gathered at the Jackson's International airport to welcome the historical 404 year old King James Bible from the United States.

The bible was  brought in by a government delegation led by parliament speak Theodore Zuorenuoc.  

It is a gift of State of Indiana in the United States to the people for Papua New Guinea. 

Men, women and children from many denominations began praying and singing praise, giving glory to the Lord as soon as the plane doors opened.

Reverend Walters along with other church elders carried the Bible out from the plane, along the red carpet and onto the stage.

Tears of joy were shed by the people who were crying out openly, praising the Lord ... [PNG Facts - April 2015]



US Ambassador Ebert-Gray visits New Tribes Mission in Goroka [PNG Loop - 18/2/17]



PNG PM sign deal with Israel for defence, security boost [PINA - 17/10/13]



... At the moment, more than 20% of the approximately eight million citizens of Papua New Guinea are born-again believers.

But this does not give the full picture of the spiritual landscape of the nation.

About 80% call themselves Christians and in this country it means you have turned away from idols to the living God – the God of the Bible!

So as a people, they have now gone from paganism to being a God-fearing nation in just a few short generations. ... [International Christian Assembly Jerusalem - 23/3/15]



Suspend all critical thinking as 16-year-old Sydney boy pleads guilty to ANZAC Day thought crimes [ABC - 24/3/17]



Iraqi refugees who have fled battles between the Islamic State and Iraqi security forces in western Mosul have surpassed 200.000 since operations to recapture that area launched mid February, according to a parliament committee. ... [ - 23/3/17]



More than 200 civilians, medical workers killed in western Mosul bombardment [ - 23/3/17]:


Airstrikes and mortar bombardments killed more than 200 people, including aid workers, in western Mosul on Thursday, according to news reports on separate incidents.

Sahfaaq news website said three medical workers died at Mosul Public Hospital in Wadi Hajar region when mortar rounds targeted the facility’s first aid ward.

Iraqi commanders said they recaptured the area earlier this month.

Meanwhile, Kurdish network Rudaw said 230 people died when three civilian-owned homes sustained an aerial bombardment in Mosul al-Jadida district, another area retaken by Iraqi forces.

Victims were mostly women and children, according to the agency. ...



@IraqiSMCEn - Iraqi Spring Media Center [23/3/17]:


Nineveh: Press sources: The neighborhoods in old Mosul witness awful genocide through the aerial and artillery bombing of the US and government forces ,and dozens of dead bodies are still under rubble.  


News agencies: (Abdul Sattar Al-Habbo),the mayor of Mosul, has demnded the government to provide the governorate with a excavator to pick up 150 dead bodies under rubble in new Mosul area.



In comments today at the State Department, Rex Tillerson confirmed what has been reported for awhile, that the US intends to keep its thousands of ground troops in Iraq over the long-term, even after ISIS ends up being defeated. ... [ - 22/3/17]



US forces in Syria have begun airdropping troops behind ISIS lines near the town of al-Tabqa, and near the important Tabqa Dam.

The exact details of the airdrop are still emerging but they are said to include some US Marines as well as a number of Kurdish forces. ... [ - 22/3/17]



UN Deputy Special Envoy for Syria Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy and his companions visited on Thursday the delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic at its residence place in Geneva.

Both sides held an unofficial session of talks during which they exchanged viewpoints on the preparations for officially starting the fifth round of the Syrian-Syrian talks in Geneva on Friday. [SANA - 23/3/17]



Five children were killed as terrorist organizations fired a rocket shell on Abdul-Qadir Baath School in al-Hamadaniyeh area in Aleppo city on Thursday, SANA reporter said.

Four other children were injured and material damage caused to the School building due to the attack, according to the reporter. ... [SANA - 23/3/17]



Syrian Foreign Ministry calls on UNSC to assume its responsibility, stop massacres perpetrated by international coalition [SANA - 22/3/17] 



24 March 2017