As much of the Middle East and Muslim communities celebrates New Year protest have occurred on Nauru the island nation on which Australia has been keeping refugees in appalling conditions.
The protests started 30mins after the Eid celebrations had begun in Iran.
The so called asylum seekers chanted freedom and asked the Australian people and politicians to close the offshore detention centers.
They held signs saying 995 days which is the time they have been kept on the Island in moldy tents with hostile guards and little chance of a future on the 22km square Island.
4 Babies, 45 children, 53 women and 46 men still waiting for their refugee determination joined in the protest.
According to Free the Children Nauru the other 839 refugees living in the impoverished community would have been jailed had they joined in.
According to Free the Children an hour ago Wilson Security guards and Nauru police were at the scene and may have broken up the protest.
Some Wilson guards and Nauruan police are known for their brutal treatment of detainees so we will wait for reports on what eventuates.
The protests on Nauru come as more than 50 000 people around Australia joined in Palm Sunday rallies to say welcome to refugees and demand the closure of the offshore detention centers.
Refugee advocates say attitudes among Australia’s towards refugees are changing.
The Human Rights Law Center’s Daniel Webb says the situation where Doctors at the Lady Cilento Childrens Hospital in Brisbane used to discharge a baby which was in danger of being sent back to Nauru was an example of the changing attitudes.
“We’ve seen every single state premier, every single state premier, support calls for Malcolm Turnbull to show some compassion.
“And then there’s you right now, around Australia, tens of thousands of people are standing together to demand better.”
The Refugee Action Coalition’s Ian Rintoul told the Sydney rally Australians had not forgotten any man, woman or child in offshore detention.
“We will not rest until all of them are safe in Australia,”
End Offshore Detention: Save $3Billion
Data from the Parliamentary Budget Office just released shows a calculated $2.47 billion saving in the 2016-2017 budget forward estimates.
An estimated further $448n million could be saved during the same period by transferring offshore detainees to onshore detention and were processed within 30 days and released into the community.
The fact that the figures are unreliable because closure of offshore detention would increase the number of boat arrivals is being reported without any mention of strategies which could be put in place to prevent people taking the enormous risk of getting on a dodgy boat to reach Australia.
Some options for Australia to stop people from getting on boats from Indonesia are:
- Start accepting refugees from Indonesia again
- Contributing $1 billion to help the UNHCR speed up the process (still saving $3 billion)
- Help make it easier to successfully apply for a Visa in refugee producing countries (rich/lucky people do get Visas to enter without claiming refugee status)
Other reports by us on offshore detention