In the name of truth, peace and love,
Our planet is healthy and whole.
We, the people of earth see clearly, hear clearly, think clearly,
Make the right judgement, right decision and the right move
For the benefit of us, our planet and the Universe.
We are now bathing in the light of dawn,
Standing in the heaven we have created together on this planet.
We wish to share this age of joy with all lives on Earth,
As we are one,
United with infinite and eternal love.
For the highest good of all concerned, so be it.
Yoko Ono Lennon
Inspiring Change for International Women’s Day 2015
Refugees on Nauru [November, 2014]
I was born by the river in a little tent
Oh and just like the river I've been running ev'r since
It's been a long time, a long time coming
But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will
It's been too hard living, but I'm afraid to die
'Cause I don't know what's up there, beyond the sky
It's been a long, a long time coming
But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will
I go to the movie and I go downtown
Somebody keep tellin' me don't hang around
It's been a long, a long time coming
But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will
Then I go to my brother
And I say brother help me please
But he winds up knockin' me
Back down on my knees, oh
There have been times that I thought I couldn't last for long
But now I think I'm able to carry on
It's been a long, a long time coming
But I know a change is gonna come, oh yes it will
'A Change Is Gonna Come', Sam Cooke 
Thousands of climate change protesters gathered in central London on Saturday to urge strong action at the Paris climate conference in December. ... [Guardian - 8/3/15]
Mohamed Fahmy launches effort to advocate for jailed journalists [CTV – 7/3/15]
The retrial of two Al-Jazeera English journalists who face terror-related charges in Egypt has been postponed to March 19. ... [CBC - 8/3/15]
1 million refugees could flee Libya in 2015
Between 500,000 and a million migrants could set off for Europe via Italy from Libya this year, the executive director of the EU's Frontex border agency told ANSA Friday.
"We have to be ready to address a more difficult situation than last year," said Fabrice Leggeri.
"Our sources tell us there are anywhere between 500,000 to a million people ready to leave from Libya".
The EU has vowed to boost Frontex's Triton operation to try to cope with greater migrant flows and avert disasters.
Frontex coordinates the EU's Triton maritime patrol operation in the southern Mediterranean, which replaced Italy's better-funded Mare Nostrum migrant-search-and-rescue programme last year.
Frontex "can't cope" on its own with a migrant emergency in the Mediterranean, Leggeri said. He asked for "more resources" from the EU as well as a "contribution" from more member states.
Leggeri admitted that migrant operations near the Libya coast were risky after cases of human traffickers threatening Italian coast guard vessels.
"The Italian authorities have taken steps to reinforce security and mitigate the risk," Leggeri told ANSA.
"I can't go into specifics because it is sensitive information. We had an exchange of opinions on this with the EU member nations. But that doesn't mean where won't be incidents tomorrow".
Also on Friday, Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni said in the Latvian capital of Riga that there's no need for "scaremongering" on the migrant issue.
"We Italians and Europeans need to commit more to facing the migration phenomenon," the minister said at an informal meeting of EU foreign ministers that takes place every six months.
"We call on Frontex to cooperate more".
A reported 8,918 migrants have landed in Italy from January 1 through March 4 this year, a significant increase from the 5,611 recorded in the same period last year, Gentiloni said Thursday.
The minister also noted that a total of 170,000 migrants disembarked on Italian coasts in 2014, out of a total of 278,000 in the European Union.
Overall, 70,000 asylum requests were presented in Italy, the country with the highest number of applications after Germany and Sweden - up 140% on the previous year.
Gentiloni went on to praise Triton for saving the lives of 23,000 immigrants from October until January. However, he added, "more can be done".
The deaths at sea of 50 refugees in the latest Mediterranean disaster on Wednesday has reignited debate about the effectiveness of the Triton program.
EU considers bigger naval presence to tackle Libya security issues [Reuters – 7/3/15]
Czech, Austrian, other foreigners missing after Libya oilfield attack [Reuters - 8/3/15]
At least three people have been killed in an attack on the north Malian town of Kidal, including a UN peacekeeper, a witness and a security source said.
Dozens of rockets and shells were fired towards a UN base just outside the desert town early on Sunday. ... [Irish Times - 8/3/15]
Five people have been killed in a machine-gun and grenade attack on a bar in Mali's capital, Bamako.
A masked gunman opened fire at La Terrasse bar, killing a French national, witnesses said.
A Belgian security official working for the EU and three Malians also died in the attack. ... [BBC - 7/3/15]
United States, "allies" continue bombing Iraq and Syria [Reuters - 8/3/15]
A Canadian special forces soldier was killed in a "friendly fire incident" after he and others ignored an order to stay in their car and showed up to the front line unannounced, a spokesman for Iraq's Kurdish forces said Sunday. ... [CTV - 8/3/15]
A security source announced on Saturday, that unidentified gunmen have kidnapped 17 people, including women and children, in eastern Baghdad. ... [IraqiNews.com - 8/3/15]
@IraqiSMCEn -6 minutes ago Iraqi Spring Media Center [8/3/15]:
Baghdad: Agencies/security source :
Terrorists in black suits driving 10 cars have kidnapped 17 civilians from Dour Asita area ....
It is worth mentioning that the kidnapped persons according to the source are thirty ones kidnapped by militias and they are displaced persons from fight areas in north and west of Iraq.........
Agencies/security source:10 persons have been killed and wounded as a roadside bomb has exploded in Bayya'a southern west of Baghdad.......
Agencies:6 persons have been killed and wounded as a car bomb has exploded near government's compound in Mahmoudiya south of Baghdad.....
Germany slams NATO European commander’s comments on Ukraine as ‘dangerous propaganda’ [RT - 7/3/15]:
A top NATO European commander’s exaggerated comments on the Ukrainian conflict are ‘dangerous propaganda,’ and put the West at risk of losing credibility, sources in the German Chancellor’s Office told Der Spiegel.
General Philip Breedlove made harsh remarks on the situation in Ukraine on Wednesday, saying that the self-defense forces, with the assistance of Russia, have prepared “over a thousand combat vehicles” and “sophisticated air defense, battalions of artillery” in the south-east of the country.
“What is clear is that right now it is not getting better, it is getting worse every day,” NATO's Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) concluded.
The comments came on the same day as the OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) stressed that progress in the fulfillment of the Minsk peace deal between Ukrainian government and the militias in Donetsk and Lugansk Regions.
Spokesman for the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine, Michael Bociurkiw, described a decline of ceasefire violations and withdrawal of heavy weaponry by both sides in the conflict.
German authorities were “alarmed” by the stance of the NATO commander and wondered whether “the Americans [are] trying to thwart European efforts at mediation led by Chancellor Angela Merkel?” Der Spiegel wrote.
The sources in the Chancellor’s office told the magazine that they viewed Breedlove's comments as “dangerous propaganda.”
Israeli forces respond to Women's Day march with violence
More than 30 Palestinians, mostly women, were injured as Israeli troops forcibly dispersed a peaceful march marking International Women's Day at Qalandiya checkpoint between Jerusalem and Ramallah on Friday.
Israeli soldiers fired tear-gas canisters, stun grenades, rubber-coated bullets, and pepper spray at hundreds of women to prevent them from reaching the checkpoint. Fourteen of the 30 injured were evacuated to hospitals.
The rally began at Qalandiya refugee camp and marched toward the nearby checkpoint. Witnesses say more than 1,000 women joined the rally along with Palestinian political leaders.
When the rally neared the checkpoint, Israeli soldiers barricaded themselves behind the steel gates and attacked female participants in the face with pepper spray as they approached.
As defiant women refused to move back, Israeli soldiers showered them with tear gas and stun grenades, forcing them to move.
A Ma'an reporter present at the event explained that altercations broke between Israeli soldiers and journalists after the soldiers "deliberately" fired tear gas at the journalists.
A heavy traffic jam then ensued on the main road in both directions causing bottleneck backups near near Qalandiya checkpoint, where vehicles travel between Ramallah, Bethlehem, Jerusalem and Hebron.
Palestinian lawmaker representing the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine Khalida Jarrar said the rally was a message from Palestinian women confirming that they would continue to struggle against Israeli occupation until Palestinians achieve freedom and independence.
Palestinian women "have always been a major component of the struggle against Israeli occupation and won’t give up this national duty," she added.
Egypt will reopen its Rafah border crossing with the Gaza strip Monday and Tuesday to allow humanitarian cases to cross. ... [Maan - 8/3/15]
Charges, assault and burglary investigation, Bundall
QPS Media [8/3/15]:
A 29-year-old woman is due to appear in the Southport Magistrates Court tomorrow after being charged by Gold Coast detectives investigating a disturbance at a Bundall residence this morning.
The Bundall woman, who has been remanded in custody, has been charged with one count each of enter dwelling with intent to commit an indictable offence in company and assault occasioning bodily harm in company.
Police investigations into the disturbance at a Wildwood Court address this morning during which time two men, aged 39 and 40, were injured, continue.
Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.
Armed robbery, McDowall
QPS Media [8/3/15]:
A man armed with a knife stole cash from a McDowall bakery in an early morning robbery.
Preliminary information indicates that around 5.50am a men threatened two female employees at the Hamilton Road business before stealing cash and fleeing on foot.
The man is described as Caucasian, aged between 40 to 50 years, approximately 172cms tall and had a slim build.
The employees were not physically injured and police investigations are continuing.
Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.
Armed robbery, Yeronga
QPS Media [8/3/15]:
Police are investigating following the armed robbery of a fast food outlet on Fairfield Road last night.
At about 7.30pm a man armed with a knife entered the shop and demanded money from the 20-year-old male attendant.
The attendant complied and the man left the store with a sum of cash.
The man is described as approximately 183 centimetres tall, of Pacific Islander descent who was last seen leaving the address in a bronze coloured sedan.
The attendant was not physically injured during the incident.
Investigations are continuing.
Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.
Fatal traffic crash, Wangetti
QPS Media [8/3/15]:
Police are investigating a fatal traffic crash that occurred on the Captain Cook Highway, this morning.
Initial investigations suggest that just before 7am, a car and a motorcycle collided at the intersection of Hartley Street and the Captain Cook Highway at Wangetti.
A 60-year-old male motorcycle rider was pronounced deceased at the scene.
The driver and sole occupant of the car was not physically injured.
The highway remains closed in both directions as officers from the Forensic Crash Unit investigate the incident.
Fatal traffic crash, Palmview
QPS Media [8/3/15]:
A second person has died following a two vehicle traffic crash in Palmview on March 5.
At around 10.24am, a head-on collision between a sedan and four-wheel-drive occurred at the intersection of Frizzo Road and Palmview Drive.
The male driver and female passenger of the sedan were transported to the Nambour hospital where the 83-year-old woman was pronounced deceased.
The 84-year-old man passed away early this morning.
The Forensic Crash Unit is investigating.
Fatal traffic crash, Gillies Range (Cairns)
QPS Media [8/3/15]:
A 51-year-old Gordonvale man has died following a single vehicle traffic crash on the Gillies Range Highway, south of Cairns this afternoon.
Police were called to the scene at around 3:30pm when a member of the public located the vehicle which had left the roadway, crashing into bushland.
Emergency services attended the scene but the man was unable to be revived and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The man was the sole occupant of the vehicle and no other people were involved. The Forensic Crash Unit is investigating.
Serious assault police, Aitkenvale [QPS Media - 8/3/15]
Serious assault police charges, Moorooka [QPS Media – 8/3/15]
Police Scotland defend new armed officer sightings
Police Scotland has defended its controversial practice of sending armed police officers to routine calls – claiming that the armed patrols could not “drive on past” incidents because they happened to be carrying guns.
Writing in today’s Scotland on Sunday, Deputy Chief Constable Iain Livingstone admits that officers from armed response vehicle (ARV) teams had been present at incidents such as recovering stolen cars, or stopping drivers who were over the drink driving limit – but insists it is part of their duty as police officers to respond.
He also points to the need for firearms when dealing with the recent terrorist attacks in Paris and Copenhagen, warning that Scotland was “not immune to that threat”.
The claims come at the end of a week when Chief Constable Sir Stephen House has been under attack from Scottish ministers over excessive use of officers carrying firearms. It emerged that armed units have responded to more than 1,600 routine incidents when they “pro-actively engaged with members of the public” since assurances were given in October that the practice would stop.
Livingstone says that while armed police are only “proactively” sent to incidents which require an armed response, they are also duty bound to respond to other events which they came across while on patrol.
“I want to be very clear: these officers are only proactively deployed by control rooms to incidents which require a specialist response – those involving firearms or threat to life,” he said.
“However, who in Scotland would not agree with me that they are police officers first and foremost. And as police officers they will come across incidents during which they will use their own professional judgment and discretion to respond.”
Livingstone points to specific incidents – including help given to a woman in Dumfries who had suffered a serious injury after a mountain bike fall.
One ARV had also been flagged down by a member of the public who alerted them to a woman who was threatening to jump from a building and prevented her from doing so.
He says armed police had also recovered a stolen car in Edinburgh after recognising it at traffic lights.
“These are just some of the many examples of positive steps by armed officers on patrol to keep people safe,” he writes.
“Officers involved in these incidents were not despatched to attend – they responded to incidents they came upon in a proportionate and professional manner.”
He warns that armed police are necessary to deal with terror-related incidents.
“Scotland is not immune to that threat; in addition, we live with the threat posed to communities from serious and organised crime, including groups which have access to firearms.
“We respond in a number of ways including having ready access to a small number of police officers who can provide a specialist response when needed. I think most people in Scotland are glad of that.”
PNG: Hanuabada shooting witnesses reluctant to give statements
PNG Loop [8/3/15]:
Investigators in Hanuabada say that they are still having issues with people willing to come in and give statements into the incident.
According to Deputy Police commissioner of Operations Jim Andrews, investigators were stalled due to people not being forth coming with information.
DCP Andrews reiterated calls made by investigators who say that while people were willing to speak out about the shootings at the village, to date only a few had come forward to go on record about it.
Meantime, NCD Central police commander Jerry Frank has made a call to the people at Hanuabada who have information on the shootings to come in and help the investigating team.
To date investigators have already established 22 key witnesses however only a few on the list have come forward to give their statements.
Meantime Frank says the vehicles that were alleged to have been used by the units had yet to be identified formally as no formal statements had been made from witnesses officially identifying the cars and placing them at the scene of the shootings.
Meanwhile both police bosses are appealing to Hanuabada residents to come forward and speak with investigators so that they can proceed with the case.
A “Birthday Bash’’ held to express indignation about the failure to prosecute alleged offenders in a commission of inquiry report was praised today.
Transparency International (PNG) chairman Lawrence Stephens said: “It is an example of the innovative energy of young people concerned about corruption. ... [PNG Loop - 8/3/15]
Several tanker cars caught fire after a Canadian National Railway train carrying crude oil derailed in Northern Ontario, prompting officials to advise nearby residents to stay indoors and avoid consuming water from local sources. ... [CBC - 7/3/15]
Hall and Oates sue over cereal name
Hall and Oates are suing a Brooklyn-based cereal firm, claiming its granola Haulin' Oats infringes their trademark.
The case accuses Early Bird Foods & Co of breaking the law with its "phonetic play on Daryl Hall and John Oates' well-known brand name".
Lawyers for the singers filed the case in Brooklyn federal court.
The duo claim the company is attempting "to trade off of the fame and notoriety associated with the artist's and plaintiff's well-known marks".
Haulin' Oats is a nut-free cereal made from maple syrup and oats, described by its makers as a "back-to-basics flavour perfect by itself or as the base for a breakfast parfait creation".
The case notes that various parties have attempted over the years "to make a connection between the artists' names and oats-related products".
Hall and Oates started working together in the early 1970s, and have become one of the most successful duos in pop history.
Whole Oats is the name of the singers' corporate company and their first album.
Their hits include Maneater, Rich Girl, Private Eyes, I Can't Go for That (No Can Do), Sara Smile and She's Gone.
Earlier this week, they postponed a concert at the Warner Theatre in Washington DC "due to Daryl Hall having laryngitis caused by a severe cold and flu", according to a statement on their official website.
The concert has been rescheduled to 29 April.
... It’s dark, it’s smooth, it’s Metallica and Hall & Oates all in one.
This mashup of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” and Hall & Oates’ “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)” is the handiwork of Neil Cicierga.
He’s no stranger to mashups, In fact, he’s got an entire album of awesome mashups. It’s titled Mouth Sounds. … [Dangerous Minds - 6/3/15]
Too much reality can give you a headache!
They Live 
They Live is a 1988 American science fiction film written and directed by John Carpenter. The film stars Roddy Piper, Keith David, and Meg Foster. It follows a nameless drifter referred to as "Nada", who discovers the ruling class are in fact aliens concealing their appearance and manipulating people to spend money, breed and accept the status quo with subliminal messages in mass media. ...
Australian politicians, media and human rights establishment, "creatives" and opinionating chatterati who ignore this have no moral authority on International Women's Day 2015
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]
Dutton and Murdoch propaganda becomes "news".
Two Australian brothers - aged 16 and 17 – believed to be attempting to travel to conflict zones in the Middle East were stopped at Sydney Airport on Friday by Customs and Border Protection officers. … [Minister for Immigration Media Release – 8/3/15]
High-risk prisoners charged with terror offences will reportedly be forbidden from speaking Arabic during visits and phone calls at a maximum security NSW jail. ... [Murdoch hate via Nine MSN - 8/3/15]
An awesome day to recognise humanity's better half - Happy International Women's Day
"tweeted" by @ScottMorrisonMP [8/3/15]
Australia media blackout on Nauru continues.
PR, "creatives" and media chatterati attending the "All About Women" event at the Sydney Opera House could help arrested women and children on Nauru.
Why are they silent?
@702sydney - ABC Sydney [8/3/15]: A great atmosphere @SydOperaHouse as the audience for #AllAboutWomen start to arrive and @sarahvmac broadcasts live
Julia Gillard Visits The Cook Islands To Assure Leaders Asylum Seekers Will Be Processed ASAP [Channel 7 report - VIDEO - September 2012]
Julia Gillard defends single parent benefit change [Guardian – 2/10/13]
United States, “allies” continue bombing Iraq and Syria
On March 6, U.S. and Coalition military forces continued to attack ISIL terrorists in Syria, using attack and fighter aircraft to conduct six airstrikes.
Separately, U.S. and Coalition military forces conducted 11 airstrikes in Iraq, using attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft against ISIL terrorists.
All strikes took place between 8 a.m., March 6, and 8 a.m., March 7, local time.
The following is a summary of the strikes conducted since the last press release:
Near Kobani, six airstrikes struck three tactical units, destroyed two fighting positions and damaged one heavy machine gun position.
Near Mosul, six airstrikes struck four ISIL tactical units, destroyed two buildings, two check points, two ISIL vehicles, and one mortar, damaged an anti-air defense artillery gun and a weapons cache, and neutralized an excavator.
Near Tal Afar, two airstrikes destroyed two anti-air defense guns.
Near Fallujah, two airstrikes struck two tactical units and destroyed one fighting position and one sniper position.
Near Kirkuk, one airstrike struck one tactical unit and destroyed one vehicle and one weapons cache.
Airstrike assessments are based on initial reports. All aircraft returned to base safely.
IraqiSpringMC - Iraqi Spring Media Center [7/3/15]: Baghdad: Agencies/security source : Terrrorists in black suits have driven 10 cars kidnapping 17 civilians form Dour Asita area.......
Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militants bulldozed early Saturday the ancient city of Hatra founded 3rd or 2nd BC by the Seleucide Empire, activists and Kurdish media reported. ... [Al Arabiya - 7/3/15]
Daily Star [7/3/15]:
A Canadian special forces soldier was killed and three more injured in Iraq when their Kurdish allies accidentally opened fire on them, the military said Saturday.
General Tom Lawson, chief of Canadian defense staff, identified the slain soldier as Sergeant Andrew Joseph Doiron, whose regiment is in Iraq to train and advise Kurdish forces.
Israel has threatened Press TV correspondent in Syria over photos taken in Golan Heights showing al-Qaeda-linked terrorists next to Israeli soldiers in the occupied region.
The photos obtained by Press TV correspondent show Takfiri terrorists from the terrorist al-Nusra Front next to Israeli soldiers, who are speaking face-to-face with terrorists in Golan. ... [Press TV - 6/3/15]
Anti-Netanyahu rally draws huge crowd in Israeli city [Al Jazeera – 7/3/15]
At least 33 Dead in Northeast Nigeria Bomb Attacks [Naharnet – 7/3/15]
Six killed in gunmen attack on Sufi place of worship in Kabul
Attackers with guns fixed with silencers killed six people after storming a Sufi place of worship in the Afghan capital Kabul on Saturday evening, according to a government statement.
Several men attacked the religious building in the western part of the capital during evening prayers, said the statement released by the Ministry of Interior.
Five people were wounded. The gunmen escaped the scene, and police arrested five suspects on Saturday evening in connection with the attack.
The rare sectarian attack comes hours after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani pledged his government would pursue peace efforts in a speech before parliament.
Afghan security forces have been struggling to defeat the insurgency after most foreign troops withdrew at the end of last year.
Last week, a suicide bomber rammed a car laden with explosives into a vehicle belonging to NATO's top envoy in Afghanistan in Kabul, killing one Turkish soldier.
Sufism is a non-violent form of Islam involving mystical rituals that has been practiced in the region for centuries. Islamic extremists, however, see Sufis as irredeemable heretics.
The defence minister was misled by his own department over a controversial DVD showing reckless, drunken and dangerous pranks by Australia's most elite soldiers while on duty in Afghanistan.
A year-long investigation by Fairfax Media has revealed that army headquarters gave information that was untrue to the former minister for defence, David Johnston, and to the media about charges and disciplinary action taken against the commandos involved in the escapades while on patrol in one of the world's most dangerous war zones.
An inquiry by Defence has now confirmed that no commandos were charged despite it stating in March 2014 that some had been. ... [Sydney Morning Herald - 8/3/15]
Chicago protesters demand 'immediate inspection' of Homan Square facility [Guardian – 8/3/15]:
... Some protesters looked to Emanuel’s opponent in the upcoming runoff election.
“Chuy Garcia has made it clear that he is for the people,” said Mark Clements, a victim of torture under the notorious Chicago police commander Jon Burge. “If he is for the people, then he needs to step up. I say, if you want to end this then we need to remove the people in power today and demand that there be [a] US investigation [into] the torture of human beings.” ...
Black Lives Matter Protesters Interrupt Obama In Selma [Think Progress – 7/3/15]
She is Tamir Rice’s mother, and her public demeanor telegraphs the enduring shock of grief. Flanked by garrulous attorneys, surrounded by family and community leaders, she stood behind the microphone at Olivet Institutional Baptist Church and said so little, so softly. Most of the time, her eyes were cast downward, and even when she looked straight ahead, it was not clear whom or what she saw.
I do not presume to know how this mother feels. Few, if any of us, can. She is a parent who has lost a child, and that is a truth that distances her from us other parents — especially us other parents — because who among us wants to imagine this? The particulars of this tragedy render her suffering almost unfathomable.
A Cleveland policeman who was deemed by his previous employer to be unqualified for the job jumped out of a car, just feet away from 12-year-old Tamir, and shot him in a public park. As attorneys Benjamin Crump and Walter Madison pointed out Tuesday, the digital clock on the video of the shooting reveals that only 0.792 second passed before Tamir Rice was on the ground. How could that boy possibly have heard any alleged police warnings about the pellet gun tucked in his waistband before he lay dying? ... [Newton Daily News - 6/3/15]
A teenager has been charged with dangerous driving at Eagleby early this morning. ... [QPS Media - 8/3/15]
A man has been charged with assault after police and medical staff were allegedly assaulted at spat on at Woorabinda last night. ... [QPS Media - 8/3/15]
Boy arrested for allegedly waving gun outside Alice Springs KFC after rocks thrown at car [ABC – 8/3/15]
West Australian [7/3/15]:
Officers were forced to call off a pursuit on the Augusta Highway near Port Pirie for safety reasons on Friday night.
When a police officer tracked down the 21-year-old driver and 13-year-old passenger from Alice Springs, he was allegedly assaulted with a rock.
An Air Wing search to find the pair was unsuccessful but the boy was arrested after returning to the car.
He will face court on charges including escaping police custody.
The man, of no fixed address, was later allegedly found in possession of methamphetamines and arrested.
He was denied bail and will appear in court on Tuesday charged with driving offences, drug trafficking charges and aiding and abetting escape from custody.
Later, officers were forced to use tyre spikes to stop a 33-year-old man who was wanted on a parole board warrant after a pursuit through Surrey Downs.
The man had been pulled over earlier in Parafield Gardens but fled after refusing to get out of the car.
He was refused bail and will appear in court next week.
Two teenagers were arrested in a stolen car in a separate incident on the South Eastern Freeway at Mount Osmond early Saturday morning.
The 17-year-old driver will appear in court next month on driving and theft offences, while the 19-year-old passenger will face an unlawful possession charge.
"Out of control parties" keep police busy in Goodna and Charters Towers [QPS Media - 7/3/15]
Interview with University of Pennsylvania political scientist Marie Gottschalk about her book Caught: The Prison State and the Lockdown of American Politics [Jacobin Mag - March 2015]:
... There are proximate causes, and then there are the deeper underlying causes. I am not saying the War on Drugs was insignificant. It was an important proximate cause of the explosion in the prison population.
Another important factor was how, beginning in the 1970s, police, prosecutors, judges, and parole boards read the political tea leaves and started to exert their enormous discretion in a more punitive way. In the 1980s and 1990s, legislators began piling on tougher sanctions across the board. These included not only stiffer punishments for drug offenses but also the proliferation of mandatory minimums, three-strikes laws, truth-in-sentencing legislation, draconian sex offender measures, mandatory sentencing guidelines, and life sentences.
The United States did not just toughen up drug penalties. It toughened up all kinds of penalties for all kinds of offenses and made sure that more people served most of their sentence before being released or paroled.
An Alexandrian man convicted of murder was hanged on Saturday for the killing of a young man in 2013, becoming the first supporter of former president Mohamed Morsi to be executed in Egypt. ... [Ahram - 7/3/15]
Pesticide likely to have caused deaths – coroner
A Canadian coroner has ruled a banned pesticide that kills everything it touches likely caused the deaths of two Canadian sisters in a Thai hotel room in 2012.
The Quebec coroner, Renee Roussel, said 20 western tourists - including New Zealander Sarah Carter - have died under similar circumstances in Asian hotels since 2009.
The Bangkok Post reported Audrey Belanger and Noemie Belanger, who were both in their twenties, died in their beds, covered in vomit, on the island of Koh Phi Phi.
A Thai doctor said at the time the common pesticide DEET was the most likely cause of their deaths but Renee Roussel said it was more likely a highly toxic pesticide called phosphine was to blame.
She said the hotel probably used phosphine - which can kill any organism that breathes - even though it is banned in Thailand.
In the case of Sarah Carter, in 2011, there was speculation the insecticide chlorpyrifos was involved.
The 23 year-old's two friends, Amanda Eliason and Emma Langlands, also fell ill.
Baby barracouta wash up dead from River Derwent after chasing bait fish
Thousands of dead fish have washed up on the shores of the Derwent Estuary in southern Tasmania.
It is believed the juvenile barracouta had been chasing bait fish up the river before becoming stranded in fresh water when the tide receded.
The fish have washed up near Lawitta and Millbrook Rise jetty.
Christine Coughanowr from the Derwent Estuary Program said there had been two separate events.
"We think schools of barracouta are swimming up stream on a rising tide, probably chasing bait fish," she said.
"Then when they get to the top of the Derwent, they're getting trapped in fresh water."
She said once the tide recedes the seafaring fish die in the fresh water.
"So basically they're in the wrong place in the wrong time," she said.
"They can't cope with the fresh water and they can't swim downwards because of the poor water quality at the bottom of the river."
She said the water at the bottom of the river is poor quality during the summer months.
"It's a stratified part of the river where you have fresh water that's lighter that floats on top denser, salt water," she said.
"At that point in the Derwent the salt water tends to have low oxygen levels."
Similar incidents occurred in the same area in 2011.
No transparency, lawyers, journalists or UNHCR can only lead to the presumption that Australia's Minister for Immigration Peter Dutton ordered the 4am arrest of children and the beating of women on Nauru.
Phone interview and photos from a young Kurdish-Iranian asylum seeker on Nauru. Compiled by Rez Nez. [VIDEO - 5/3/15]:
At 4 am the police entered the camp and rooms and arrested some refugees based on their photo identification.
Among the detained people there were 2 children, one 7 year old girl and a 15 year old boy.
At 10 am we went to go to the police office to complain about this arrest.
Two buses, that camp and local police officers use, were there.
They stopped us and arrested some of us but we (some of us) could escape.
Until then, 135 individuals had been arrested.
At 5pm, we gathered again, and again police came and arrested some of us. Only 20 people remained.
They couldn't arrest us all because the buses had no more space for anyone else.
In total nearly 200 refugees were arrested.
We went towards the police office and asked them to arrest us as well, because we accompanied these detained refugees.
But they didn't (arrest us) and said "we have not been asked to do that".
We were outside of the police office with immigration officers and the service camps personnel.
Then some case managers arrived and talked with local police officers regarding the 2 arrested kids.
After 2 hours, they (the case managers) convinced local police to release the children (from the jail).
Tell me why have they (the police) arrested them? Why has the 7 year old kid been arrested?
They didn't provide any reason for arresting these refugees at 4am.
In the case of the arrest of the 7 year old girl in the camp - even local police were surprised!
But ultimately they did this as they had (supposedly) been asked to.
As for what happened after that?
We were in the police office until 10pm.
Then 3 arrested women, one of them who was pregnant, were released.
I talked with them. They said local police had beaten them. One of them said her body was kicked by the police and now is swollen and bruised. So she wants to make a complaint against them.
They charged 8 of the arrested refugees, and now they don't have the right to leave the camp - under any condition.
The intention of these actions, in my opinion, is to silence protests.
As a young female refugee, how do you feel about Australia?
The worst feeling is I thought after escaping from my country, there would be some individuals that would help me; they will see my pain and will let me live freely.
But it didn't happen. Even I lost all of my ...
In these 2 years that I was in the camp, I have seen things that I have never seen before in my life.
Today, when I saw ... with my compatriots and people who I have spent my time with them in last 2 years ... [indecipherable] when we were talking with hope and desire about a day that we will be released.
Then we realised that none of us are important for them. They didn't even care about a 7 year old girl.
Today I overheard a woman in the detention centre saying the local police didn't even give us drinking water.
Up until this moment (that I am talking with you) I have felt I want to help them and ... (connection lost)
Seven-year-old Anas Yahya Abdeen was reportedly shot with a rubber-coated bullet by Israeli soldiers on Friday evening in his house in the Ras al-Amud neighborhood east of the Old City of Jerusalem.
Anas was standing in the balcony opposite to the house of al-Salayma family when "all of the sudden he started to cry and shout, and we realized later that he was hit by a black rubber-coated bullet in his arm," the father explained. ... [Maan - 7/3/15]
Wisconsin police fatally shoot black teen, prompting protest [Reuters - 7/3/15]
The 19-year-old who was killed during an officer-involved shooting has been identified as Anthony Robinson. ... [NBC - 7/3/15]
As Boston Marathon Bomber Admits Guilt, FBI Sued for Killing Friend of Tsarnaevs in Florida [Democracy Now – 6/3/15]
… And in the naked light I saw
10,000 people, maybe more
People talking without speaking
People hearing without listening
People writing songs that voices never share
And no-one dares
Disturb the sound of silence …
'Sound of Silence', Simon and Garfunkel 
tackles media bias, lies
Daily Star [7/3/15]:
“It’s great to be back here,” said veteran U.S. journalist Jim Clancy as he sipped a fresh carrot juice at a cafe in Downtown Beirut.
Clancy, who worked with the American television channel CNN for over 30 years, spent years covering the civil war in Lebanon from a hotel in East Beirut, long since destroyed.
“I came to Beirut in 1982, in the summer of 1982 when the Israelis were bombing West Beirut. It was full blown war,” he told The Daily Star.
“The first time I went to West Beirut I drove over the airport runways to get in.”
Clancy has returned to Beirut in the intervening years, and has watched the city rebuild itself from the weed-choked rubble.
He left CNN in January after tweeting the term “Hasbara” to another user, Oren Kessler, who had questioned one of Clancy’s tweets about the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris.
The term Hasbara is used to refer to pro-Israeli messages which many consider to be propaganda. Soon after the tweet, he was flooded by messages calling him an anti-Semite, a bigot and a clown.
But Clancy said that he had previously had a hostile Twitter exchange about the Israeli occupation with Kessler, a political analyst and former Jerusalem Post reporter, and that the Hasbara remark “had nothing to do with Charlie Hebdo.”
Clancy, however, has but few regrets. “I don’t have to put up with this shit and I’m not going to. I’d had enough,” he said.
“Who likes trolls? I don’t?”
Clancy came back to Beirut to participate in a workshop for the May Chidiac foundation earlier this week, and a lecture at the Lebanese American University Friday afternoon.
Fielding a student’s question about bias in Western media after his talk Friday, Clancy said while propaganda and harassment come from all different parties, Israeli media minders are particularly organized and well-funded.
But even the deepest pockets cannot ensure a message will stick, he said.
“Hasbara funding has increased for the Israeli lobby, but its propaganda efforts have failed. I mean the number of young people on campuses who now support the Palestinian cause has risen,” he told the audience.
A number of other American media personalities, including Brian Williams and Bill O’Reilly have made the news of late for having falsified or exaggerated details of their conflict reporting.
No such allegations have been leveled against Clancy, who has reported from conflict zones and far-flung corners of the world for decades.
“In my case I’d rather be Twitter-fried for telling the truth than held out for lying, saying I was somewhere I wasn’t or claiming I saw people murdered who weren’t,” Clancy told The Daily Star.
“I hate for journalists to make the news, but it happens. Television is show business,” he added.
Clancy believes, however, that one evening’s tweets cannot eclipse his 40-year career in journalism.
His career was dotted with stints in Beirut, both brief and extended, which he still considers his favorite place in the world.
When given a choice to cover politics at the White House or return to Beirut in 1983, Clancy said the decision was a simple one. “I ended up within about 1 minute deciding to come to Beirut, essentially because the people were compelling. They were worth risking your life for.”
“The war in Lebanon was my last experience where there was any respect for journalists. Both the Muslims and the Christians knew that we had to go to the other side, we had to cross over to get the other side of the story, and they actually valued us as journalists because we got the other side of the story,” he said, finishing his carrot juice.
“Today in every conflict everybody tries just to manipulate the media and tries to use you as a tool,” he said.
“They want you to be a propagandist for their side.”
@tevelli - Hon. Russ J. Kun MP - Nauru government [7/3/15]: Met some refugees who didn't want to partake in protests are staying in local people's home for safety due to threats from other refugee
... Can you year me? I got disconnected. They may have disconnected our connections. ... Previously we received a letter from a Nauruan telling that their income has been from us ... and they have been paid by the Australian government to keep us here without any sympathy. ... [VIDEO - A Voice From Nauru - 4/3/15]
The Minister has no comment because the Australian government only wants liars and sadists working in its refugee concentration camps. [ABC - 7/3/15]:
Aid organisation Save the Children says it is frustrated and angry over a "disturbing" intelligence report that sparked the Moss review into allegations of sexual misconduct at the Nauru detention centre.
The review was set up to examine allegations that staff from the charity acted inappropriately at the Nauru detention centre.
The review, headed by former integrity commissioner Phillip Moss, was announced by former immigration minister Scott Morrison in October and is due to be released on Tuesday.
The Moss review examined why 10 Save the Children aid workers were sent home from the detention centre and whether they fabricated allegations of sexual abuse.
An intelligence report released this week by Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young showed there was no evidence to support claims of misconduct and the review was based on vague allegations.
The report stated; "It is considered probable that refugee advocates and some service providers are engaged with asylum seekers, and refugees, to manufacture situations where 'evidence' can be obtained of the unsuitability of Nauru for processing and resettlement..."
It also claimed "It is probable there is a degree of internal and external coaching, and encouragement, to achieve evacuations to Australia through self-harm actions."
However, Senator Hanson-Young said the review was a witch hunt.
"The reason that I took the extraordinary step to read the report into Hansard is that I believe the Save the Children workers who are implicated in the report, and were fired from their jobs, deserve to know what accusations were being made against them," she said.
"We can't trust the Government on this - they now have form - we've seen that from the exposure of the intelligence report.
"The Government simply cannot be trusted to tell the truth to the Australian public.
"The report must be released in full - there's no two ways about that.
"The report simply contains a series of vague allegations without any actual evidence of inappropriate action by any staff member in the centre.
"It seems, from this intelligence report, that the only crime committed by those employees was to report accusations of abuse and the inappropriate behaviour of security guards, who are employed by the very same company that wrote this intelligence report."
Save the Children spokesman Matt Tinkler described the intelligence report as "disturbing" and the organisation was frustrated by the allegations.
"Especially as you can imagine for those staff who ultimately lost their jobs as a result of this so-called intelligence report," he said.
"It's not the kind of report that should be relied upon to attack an organisation like Save the Children."
Immigration Minister Peter Dutton's office declined to comment.
The United States is spying on the communications of the refugees of their wars currently held on Nauru.
Democracy Now [6/3/15]:
Newly revealed documents from Edward Snowden have shown New Zealand is vacuuming up communications across the Asia-Pacific region and sharing them with the National Security Agency in the United States.
Reports published by The Intercept in collaboration with the New Zealand Herald and journalist Nicky Hager describe how New Zealand’s digital spy agency collects data from island nations with whom it has friendly ties, such as Tuvalu, Nauru, Samoa, the Solomon Islands and Fiji.
The spying reportedly includes monitoring of government officials and NGOs in the South Pacific countries. New Zealand shares the data through the NSA system XKEYSCORE, a search engine-like tool which lets the NSA monitor nearly every type of online activity.
... The Green Party has now laid a complaint with the Inspector General of Intelligence and Security, saying thousands of New Zealanders who live or travel in the Pacific could have had communications intercepted. ... [RNZI - 6/3/15]
Protests are expected in more than 20 towns and cities today against a proposed trans-Pacific trade and investment treaty. … [NZ Herald – 7/3/15]
Voyage of the St. Louis [United States Holocaust Memorial Museum]
Turner Classic Movies:
Based on a chilling real-life incident from the early days of World War II, Voyage of the Damned (1976) told the dramatic story of a shipload of European Jews expelled from Hitler's Germany who sailed across the Atlantic in 1939 in a quest to gain asylum in Havana, Cuba, and eventually the United States.
What they found when they arrived was a shocking and ultimately deadly slap-in-the-face that still reverberates today, nearly seventy years later.
The ship was the SS St. Louis, out of Hamburg, and the voyage was actually a Nazi-crafted ruse straight from the warped mind of propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels.
The Nazis knew that the U.S. would be reluctant to offer sanctuary to the passengers, therefore the Nazi policy of persecution would be validated and the world would accept their heinous treatment of Germany's Jewish citizens. ...
@IraqiSMCEn - Iraqi Spring Media Center [7/3/15]:
Anbar: One of the medical staff has been killed and 5 wounded -including two of the nursing staff-in aerial shelling on Garma Hospital.......
Salah-il-deen: The aircrafts shell shops in Beiji............... [VIDEO - 4/3/15]
Islamic State group jihadists killed eight guards on Friday in an attack on the southern Libyan oilfield of al-Ghani, a spokesman for the unit tasked with guarding oil installations said. ... [Naharnet - 5/3/15]
Russian Envoy Says US Embassies Provide Misleading Information on Ukraine [Sputnik – 6/3/15]
Putin did kill Nemtsov – we now have the proof [The Saker - 5/3/15]
Benjamin Netanyahu - Stand! Down! Iran (Noy Alooshe Remix)
Indonesia: Death row convicts isolated, depressed
Jakarta Post [6/3/15]:
Death row convicts held in isolation on Nusakambangan prison island in Cilacap, Central Java, are growing weak and depressed as their execution date nears.
Christian minister Mirjaja from the Bali Abbalove Church, who acts as the spiritual counselor for death row convict Myuran Sukumaran, traveled to Nusakambangan on Thursday and said Sukumaran was dejected.
“I know him well because I’ve been accompanying him almost every day while he was at the Ke-robokan Penitentiary in Bali,” Mirjaja told The Jakarta Post at the Wijaya Pura Dock in Cilacap, the gateway to the prison island.
According to the priest, after all of Sukumaran’s legal efforts failed, his mental condition began to deteriorate.
“It’s not just that he will soon be executed, but also because of the futile legal efforts he’s undergone,” said Mirjaja.
“He told me that before his death he only wished to be accompanied by his family and close friends and he asked me to accompany him for as long as he is in Nusakambangan,” he added.
Sukumaran and another Australian, Andrew Chan — both of whom are members of the infamous Bali Nine group — arrived in Nusakambangan on Wednesday on a chartered Wings Air flight escorted by two Indonesian Air Force Sukhoi and two F-16 fighter jets.
After arriving, the pair were placed in isolation cells.
The are scheduled to face a firing squad from the Central Java Police’s Mobile Brigade (Brimob).
Separately, human rights activist Ursa Supit said Nigerian death row convict Raheem Agbaje Salami had also been brought to the prison island.
“He is in good condition but tired, probably due to the long trip, which took eight hours from the Madiun Penitentiary to Nusakambangan,” Supit said at the Wijaya Pura Dock after visiting Raheem on Thursday afternoon.
Supit added that Raheem, recently transferred from the Madiun Penitentiary in East Java, had not yet been placed in an isolation cell.
The Attorney General’s Office (AGO) stated earlier that 11 death row convicts would be executed.
However, only 10 individuals have been named.
Of the 10 individuals, nine are already on Nusakambangan and one, Filipina Mary Jane Veloso, remains at the Wirogunan Penitentiary in Yogyakarta.Others slated to be executed are drug convicts Serge Areski Atlaoui of France, Rodrigo Gularte of Brazil, Martin Anderson of Ghana, Zainal Abidin of Indonesia and Indonesian murder convict Syofial,
On Thursday, a day after Sukumaran and Chan were transferred to Nusakambangan, police, assisted by the Indonesian Military (TNI), beefed up security around the Wijaya Pura Dock.
“We are carrying out our duty to secure Nusakambangan and surrounding areas until the executions are over. We have posted more than 100 of our personnel in the waters off Nusakambangan,” said Cilacap Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Ulung Sampurna Jaya.
Only those with pressing affairs are allowed to meet inmates on the island. Several individuals, including relatives, have been prevented by security personnel at Wijaya Pura Dock from visiting loved ones as they await execution.
“Yes, we were prohibited from entering just now, despite the fact that Andrew is my brother [...] Andrew is the adopted son of my father, Daniel Alexander, so we must meet him to support him,” Nicolas Alexander told journalists.
He said his father had visited Chan almost every day while he was being held at the Kerobokan Penitentiary on Bali.
A ship transfers Angelita Muxfeldt (back center, in black), a cousin of Rodrigo Gularte, a Brazilian national on death row for smuggling drugs into Indonesia, and others to Nusakambangan island from Cilacap, Central Java, on Thursday. Indonesia began preparations early on Wednesday for the execution by firing squad of nine foreigners including Gularte and an Indonesian condemned for drug smuggling, as diplomatic squabbles persist over the executions. (AP/Achmad Ibrahim) [Jakarta Post - 5/3/15]
No UNHCR. No journalists. No lawyers. Human rights groups, lawyers associations and "creatives" silent.
Australia got away with this.
Now it's getting away with this.
Silence allows propaganda to flow and the greenlighting and justification of further human rights atrocities:
@LyallMercer - Nauru government spin doctor [7/3/15]: Nauru’s Justice Minister reveals refugees who don't wish to participate in unlawful protests are being threatened by other refugees ...
Senator Michaelia Cash is responsible for this.
... “Febrina is like the rest of the little kids there. She’s wasting away. She’s lost about 15 per cent of her body weight, dropping from a healthy 15 kg down to between 12-13 kg. She’s been sick many times and kept in isolation. She’s bewildered and frightened. She doesn’t eat a lot of the time. It’s the same for the other kids,” Grant said. Claiming that the situation is the same for other 36 children, he said Febrina has become “a hollow remnant of the little girl in the picture, which was taken just over a year ago”.
“Slowly but surely life is being crushed out of her and all the other little children on Nauru. This government is directly responsible for their dire situation. They should be brought to Australia immediately for rehabilitation before it’s too late,” he said. ...
Colombo Mirror [5/3/15]
Australia's new corporate-imposed No Fly List ----> Qantas bans student who stood up for what she believed in [Canberra Times – 7/3/15]
Man critical after WA immigration concentration camp bashing
A man is in a critical condition in hospital after being bashed in a West Australian immigration detention centre.
The Department of Immigration and Border protection confirmed there was an "incident between several detainees" on Thursday at the Yongah Hill detention centre, next to the town of Northam, about 80km north-east of Perth.
Both Australian Federal Police and West Australian police, including detectives and a forensic team, were sent to the centre.
A witness said the man was in a compound of the centre largely reserved for convicted criminals awaiting deportation.
It is understood several of the assailants were from New Zealand.
A detainee who witnessed the attack said the victim was beaten inside the Falcon compound's television room.
"When they took him to hospital, he was still walking but he was bleeding," the witness said.
The man was initially taken to Northam Hospital, but then transferred to Royal Perth Hospital, where a spokeswoman said he was in a critical condition.
St John Ambulance said a doctor and a nurse had accompanied the man in the ambulance from Northam, as a priority one patient, amid concerns he may have head injuries.
Several detainees at Yongah Hill have told the ABC they believe the man is in a coma.
The immigration department said in a statement that detention service provider Serco was "providing the department with a full report into the circumstances of the incident".
"Law enforcement agencies have been informed," the statement said.
Serco said it was "committed to maintaining a safe and secure facility".
"Our officers took immediate action to de-escalate this incident and ensure that care could be provided to the individual as quickly as possible," the company said in a statement.
The Australian Federal Police have been contacted for comment.
WA Police referred enquiries to the Immigration Department.
Northam Shire president Steven Pollard said he did not know the exact circumstances of the incident but it was a concern.
"Obviously, any fighting or any incidents that require some sort of medical attention are a problem," Mr Pollard said.
"But I'm reasonably confident the department is on to the whole [issue], and they'll be looking into this incident and be making any adjustments as required."
Yongah Hill detention centre is now about half full of asylum seekers and half full of people detained for visa compliance breaches.
They include non-citizens who were sentenced to 12 months or more jail in Australia, have served their sentence and now face deportation under section 501 of the Migration Act.
People who have committed armed hold ups and been convicted of child sexual assault are among the section "501" detainees inside Yongah Hill.
Asylum seekers and other detainees have previously said they are terrified of the 501s, who have brought with them hardened prison attitudes, where guards are viewed as "dogs".
The union representing the guards, United Voice, previously warned mixing the 501s and asylum seekers was a dangerous mistake and the centre was a "pressure cooker".
The facility was originally set up to house single adult male asylum seekers in 2012.
New York Times [3/3/13]:
Thirteen years ago, researchers at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum began the grim task of documenting all the ghettos, slave labor sites, concentration camps and killing factories that the Nazis set up throughout Europe.
What they have found so far has shocked even scholars steeped in the history of the Holocaust.
As early as 1933, at the start of Hitler’s reign, the Third Reich established about 110 camps specifically designed to imprison some 10,000 political opponents and others, the researchers found.
As Germany invaded and began occupying European neighbors, the use of camps and ghettos was expanded to confine and sometimes kill not only Jews but also homosexuals, Gypsies, Poles, Russians and many other ethnic groups in Eastern Europe.
The camps and ghettos varied enormously in their mission, organization and size, depending on the Nazis’ needs, the researchers have found.
In Berlin alone, researchers have documented some 3,000 camps and so-called Jew houses, while Hamburg held 1,300 sites.
Dr. Dean, a co-researcher, said the findings left no doubt in his mind that many German citizens, despite the frequent claims of ignorance after the war, must have known about the widespread existence of the Nazi camps at the time.
“You literally could not go anywhere in Germany without running into forced labor camps, P.O.W. camps, concentration camps,” he said.
“They were everywhere.”
Australian immigration detention facilities
Detention and Refugee Statistics [Asylum Seeker Resource Centre]
How will you feel about your superannuation portfolio (and your union) when the ICC, a truth and justice commission or legal action forces all shareholders to tour Australia's concentration camps?
HESTA (the health sector superannuation fund) is at present a substantial shareholder in Transfield Services, the company that runs the Australian detention centres on Nauru and Manus Island (PNG). ... [xBorder Operational Matters - 23/1/15]
Members’ Letter to UniSuper [xBorder Operational Matters - 22/9/14]
... There was no picnic behind the barbed wire ...
Greece outlines immigration reforms [Al Jazeera - 5/3/15]:
… In addition to a plan that would grant citizenship to second-generation migrants born and raised in Greece, the new immigration ministry has also proposed shutting down immigrant detention centres.
These are the boldest statements to date from Athens on the issue of migration.
Speaking to Al Jazeera, Christodoulopoulou [Greek Immigration Minister, Tasia Christodoulopoulou] said detention must only be used as "an exceptional measure", and promised immediate changes.
She has called for expediting the process following the suicide of a migrant detained at the Amygdaleza facility in western Athens on February 14.
"Our first priority is the immediate release of unaccompanied minors and their safe removal," she said.
"Abolishing the 18-month detention period and rescission of asylum seekers' detention are urgent measures for us."
Greek law currently limits the detention of migrants who have entered the country illegally to 18 months, and states that after their detention, if they do not apply for asylum, they should be repatriated to their countries of origin.
But, because of the lack of bilateral agreements with the countries of origin of so many migrants, safe repatriation is often not possible.
Most do not agree to voluntarily return and do not want to apply for asylum in Greece, because of the long process and the unlikelihood of being granted refuge - Greece has the lowest acceptance rate of asylum requests in the EU.
So they remain locked up, destitute and in limbo.
As a result, Greek detention centres have been filled beyond capacity, and many migrants have been detained far longer than the maximum duration allowed under the law.
Last month, 20 inmates at the Amygdaleza detention centre - most of whom had applied for asylum - were released, indicating the new immigration ministry is beginning to deliver on its promises.
However, it remains unclear how immigration authorities will deal with those released.
A lawyer by training, Christodoulopoulou is also calling for better "monitoring requirements, provision of guarantors, release on bail", and other means of legal recourse for those detained.
The immigration minister added she wants to facilitate the integration of those who have lived in the country for years and who have formed "strong bonds with Greek society".
This, Christodoulopoulou said, will be beneficial for both migrants and Greece in the long run.
United States, "allies" continue bombing Iraq and Syria [Centcom - 6/3/15]
@IraqiSMCEn - Iraqi Spring Media Center [6/3/15]:
Anbar: The aircrafts have shelled the civilian homes in Shurtan ,Albu Alwan and Ganatir areas in Garma......
Anbar: 6 civilians -including two children -have been killed and dozens wounded in aerial shelling which has targeted Ganatir market in Garma district .........
41 persons -including children and women - have been killed and wounded in Fallujah in the random bombing of government's army during the last 24 hours........
News reported that unmanned plane of international coalition has been shot down in Dour district in Salah-il-deen.......
7 March 2015