A common narrative is people washing up on tropical island after their boats have become lost at sea.

The refugees on Manus Island did embark on a dangerous voyage by boat but that is not why they are now in this predicament, at least not directly.

Fleeing their home countries for security reasons they arrived on Australian shores and asked for protection.

Unfortunately for those on Manus the Australian government had just implemented a policy to send all people who arrived by boat to offshore processing centres.

These centers are in developing nations who this colonial power can bully and bribe with money.

Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island fits the bill for this policy which seeks to send a message to other refugees that Australia is not a welcoming humanitarian country (as many believe).

After some three years of locking refugees in the derelict centre on Manus the PNG supreme court ruled this incarceration unconstitutional.

A series of events have lead to the current situation where detainees feel safer in the cage they have so longed to escape from than outside.

Even when not surrounded by wire on Manus they are still held captive by the ocean and the administrative chains which deny them the freedom we take for granted.

Fearful for their lives if they leave the center and move to the new accommodation closer to town they are now isolated.

Gradually all staff and nearly all services have been withdrawn from the center.

The 615 men have stockpiled water and food preparing for what now is an unknown future.

As  October 31 draws to a close some areas of the center still have services – power, unpotable water.

Unable to record an interview about of poor reception Farhad sent me some voice clips explaining the situation at the center.

Download from Radio4all

Terrified some men are now sleeping and others are keeping watch, ever fearful of attacks by locals.



Border Fascist Update

According the the Operation Sovereign Borders December Update there were no so called illegal maritime arrivals transferred to Australian Immigration authorities.
And no illegal maritime arrivals were transferred to regional processing centres. This doesn’t confirm whether any people attempted to seek asylum in Australia by boat.
The report also mentions the 2 year anniversary of the policy to turn boats back to their country of origin. It claims 695 people on 23 boats have been returned to their country of origin (the country the boat left from most likely Indonesia).
Of course they claim this is saving lives at sea. But this logic is nonsensical.

How can you save lives at sea by keeping boats at sea? Do they know what happened to the people when they returned to Indonesia? Did they even get back to Indonesia?

I’ve read reports of boats washing up on remote islands and people dying trying to get to a habitated area..

There’s also the claim that refugees on Nauru are ‘free’ because they are no longer in detention centres. And that sending 72 children, who are in detention in Australia, to Nauru will be freeing them from detention.
They are free in so far as they can travel around the 21 sq km Island. Where the government is in turmoil and rape and theft are common, especially if you are ‘not a local’.
Last year children on Nauru staged a protest claiming to be bullied at school and hit by teachers.
“[Nauruan] children from the school are so bad. They tell us bad words and when you want to go to the playground, they will hit us. Nauru is so dirty and so small.”
Meanwhile the Department of Immigration and pandering to racists has committed to spending over $1M for medals for its Border Farce staff.
Much like Minister Dutton’s incapability to control a mobile phone this gave social media users a chance to have a lot of fun.
Underlying this humor is the knowledge of the torment and psychological and physical harm which is being perpetrated by the Australian government against some of the worlds most vulnerable people.
One of those people and someone who is able to allow his inner turmoil to flow into words for others to read is Kurdish Iranian Behrouz Boochani. Below is some of his writing.
From Manus prison for Australian civil society……Australia and Australian society are in a susceptible stage. The fight of civil society with the fascist state has reached to a sensitive point.
During last 3 years the Australian government has acted dictatorially and tortured asylum seekers. Australia’s civil society and human rights activists have not been stationary and are fighting against this dictatorial system by many means but the state has not shown any flexibility and has instead increased strain and stress on asylum seekers.
The behavior of a dictatorial state shows us that it does not value civil society and despite all actions will keep its ways! It is a dangerous occurrence for Australian society because if civil society is defeated in this fight and the state keeps on with its policy civil society will be weakened and the state will continue this pattern in the future. Dictatorship is like a cancer and can easily affect all the portions of a society.
The fight between the Australian state and civil society is a very sensitive fight. It is not only for tortured asylum seekers, this is a vital and significant fight for all Australian people also. It is a fight for the kind of humanity our world needs.We should make the fascist state understand that it can not simply ignore humanity and human rights emphasizing that our fight with Australia is not just for some thousands of refugees but a fight for humanity, justice and peace!!!
Imagine if Australian civil society were able to defeat Peter Dutton? What would the future look like? Many thanks. Behrouz Boochani.


reza crane

Refugee Action Coalition


The Iranian asylum seeker, Reza Khestinzhad, who staged a nine hour
protest on top of a the crane on Nauru on Friday (27 November), has
been arrested by Nauruan police.

Reza was taken to the IHMS clinic on Friday, around 6.30pm, after he
ended the protest and came down from the crane.

But this morning, Sunday, 29 November, Nauruan police arrested him at
the clinic and took him to the police station, where he is being held.

Police refused to allow his sister to see him at the police station
today and indicated that he would be held until at least Wednesday,
although police have not said what charge, if any, he would face.

“We are extremely worried for Reza’s welfare,” said Ian Rintoul,
spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition, “Reza should not be in
jail. The police are an extension of the Nauruan government that is
doing everything it can to stifle the right to protest on Nauru,
including arbitrary arrest.

“Reza’s only crime was to send a message to the world that Nauru is a
prison island.”

Meanwhile, today, Sunday 29 November, a Sri Lanka asylum seeker has
scaled a high tree near the family camp on Nauru. The asylum seeker
has been in the tree since 9am, Nauruan time.

The man, his wife and a daughter, have been held on Nauru for two and
half years.

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713

reza crane

Protests on Christmas Island – Hunger Strikes, Stitched Lips



Around 75 asylum seekers who began their protest in solidarity with Reza Barati last Tuesday are in their sixth day of hunger strike – having slept Saturday night outside their compounds, in the rain.

In response to the protest, Immigration and Serco have locked down the whole of the detention centre, confining hundreds of asylum seekers inside their compounds.

Now the outside hunger strikers have now been joined by up to 300 other asylum seekers, Iranian, Iraqi and Rohingyan, in the locked down compounds.

Hundreds are into their fourth day of hunger strike as the anger and frustration grows.

Seven Iranians in Gold and Green compound have also stitched their lips.

The protesters have been on the island for 10 and 11 months.

“We are getting tired with no activity. But they are always warning, you we will be sent to Manus Island or Nauru. We need freedom.

The people outside in the rain are calling for freedom,” one asylum seeker said from inside the detention centre.

Many of those outside, some of whom are also refusing liquids, are having difficulty walking, are beginning to feel weak and unwell.

Some asylum seekers are being denied their daily medication because of the lockdown.

The protesters, both inside and outside are calling for contact with the media and the UN to inspect the camp.

“The situation is deteriorating badly on Christmas Island,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“The asylum seekers on Christmas Island are collateral damage; the onshore victims of a failing system of offshore processing.

Their mental health is already declining, yet they face many more months, and perhaps years, in detention.

“There is no reason the government could not begin their processing, but the government is determined to inflict maximum disadvantage,” said Rintoul.

For more information contact Ian Rintoul mob 0417 275 713.

Sri Lankan on Bridging Visa Committs Suicide: Morrison Uncaring

Leo Seemanpillai

The young man who was on a bridging visa set himself on fire on yesterday in Geelong.

According to refugee advocates his name was Leo Seemanpillai.

The 29-year-old Tamil man arrived in Darwin by boat in January 2013 and has been on a bridging visa since May 2013, living in Geelong.

The burn injuries affected 90 per cent of his body and he died this morning in The Alfred hospital’s burns unit.

Like many asylum seekers he had family in Australia.

Trevor Grant, from the Tamil Refugee Council, said the man had fled persecution in Sri Lanka in the later stages of the country’s decades-long civil war, spending time in an Indian refugee camp before arriving in Australia.

Grant said the man was frustrated at the lack of progress on his protection visa.

“He was very, very depressed about his situation, not knowing what’s happening to him.

“He feared if he went back [to Sri Lanka] … he’d be going straight back to jail and probably torture,” Grant said.

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison’s statements on the incident reflect his detachment from the psychological effects of the Coalition’s harsh treatment of asylum seekers.

“I’m advised by my department that a man believed to be an illegal maritime arrival of Sri Lankan nationality suffered serious burns in an incident in Geelong yesterday morning, I understand he died of his injuries overnight.”

Mr Morrison said the man’s death was not caused by an assault, but refused to give further details.

Emergency services yesterday rushed to the Geelong suburb of Newtown in response to reports that a man was on fire near the intersection of Cairns St and West Fyans Street after 10.30am.

Police are investigating the incident.In April another Tamil asylum seeker who received a letter saying his protection visa application had failed took his own life.

In other news hundreds of asylum seekers on Christmas Island are involved in a hunger strike, the Refugee Action Coalitions says 7 people have sewn their lips together.

Mr Morrison confirmed that protests are continuing on Christmas Island, but refused to confirm reports that some asylum seekers have sewn their lips together.




Guards on Manus Mislead Detainee After Throat Cut by Locals

manusislandthroat cut


From The Citizen X Disclosures Facebook page –

The Iranian ethnic Arab asylum seeker, Amin Afravi GRL076 whose throat was cut by Manus locals and survived, has been told by Wilson that he attempted suicide – and that his throat had not been cut by locals.

Wilson has told him that he had attempted suicide on 14th of February although eyewitnesses confirmed that Amin’s throat was cut by locals in front of their eyes on 16th .

On the night of 16th, while his throat was still bleeding, G4S and immigration agents came and asked him questions about his case.

Amin, who is now mentally ill, is under pressure to accept that he did that to himself.11.May.14.

About The Citizen X Disclosures

“The Citizen X Disclosures: Giving names, faces or voices to those that the government have given nothing but a number.

We have sources inside Manus Island and other Australian Immigration detention facilities, providing news, testimony, evidence and witness accounts leaked from inside Manus Island and Australian Immigration Detention. This is what the Australian Government does not want you to know. This material is often leaked or obtained at great personal risk to the source. If you disagree with current Australian Government policy and treatment of asylum seekers and refugees share this page and these posts. Let’s make sure the world knows what’s really going on.

If you have information to provide, or comments of a more sensitive nature message us through this page and we may be able to arrange an alternative mode of communication. This is not guaranteed. Sometimes details are omitted to protect people. When text is translated it is done as faithfully as possible and only changed to reflect cultural idioms and correct continuity.
Names mentioned here are done with the permission of those mentioned. We do not publish private messages from our Facebook page but we will answer your questions if you have any. ”

Citizen X Disclosures is an initiative of The Stand and New Parliament Magazine:

Australia asks impoverished Cambodia to take some asylum seekers

Another example of Australia’s racist foreign policies.
Prak Chan Thul Reuters2:45 a.m. CST, February 22, 2014

PHNOM PENH (Reuters) – Australia asked Cambodia, one of Asia’s poorest countries, on Saturday to take in asylum seekers detained while trying to reach the Australian coast and Cambodia said it would think about it.

Australia’s government came to power last year partly because of a tough stance on asylum seekers arriving from Indonesia with Prime Minister Tony Abbott promising to “stop the boats”.

Australia already has offshore detention centers in the impoverished South Pacific nations of Papua New Guinea and Nauru for asylum seekers it intercepts, often in rickety boats.

On Saturday, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop asked Prime Minister Hun Sen if Cambodia, which in the 1970s and 1980s saw a huge exodus of refugees fleeing war and starvation, could also house some migrants.

“The Australian minister has requested that Cambodia takes in some refugees,” Cambodian Foreign Minister Hor Namhong told a news briefing with Bishop.

“In the past, Cambodians have fled their country to other countries but now, it’s time that Cambodia takes in refugees from other countries,” he said.

Hun Sen would “take serious consideration” of the request, Hor Namhong said.

In her comments, Bishop did not refer directly to the Australian request but said she had discussed cooperation with Cambodia in various areas including people smuggling.

The number of asylum seekers reaching Australia pales in comparison with other countries but it is a polarizing political issue that also stokes tension with neighboring Indonesia over border policies that have been criticized by the United Nations and international human rights groups.

One asylum seeker was killed and about 80 were hurt in rioting last week at the Manus Island detention centre in Papua New Guinea.

The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees has said the Manus camp should be shut because it fails to provide “safe and humane conditions of treatment in detention”.