Thursday, 3 November 2016

“Australia is not the attraction: they just wanted safety and certainty.”


They flee from their place of danger and uncertainty to set out on wild seas in a flimsy vessel.   However dangerous the journey, it looks better to them than what they leave behind. Their voyage of hope however has ended in a concentration camp on Manus Island.

The spirits of everyone is very bad there is a lot of hopelessness there.  I was talking to a friend of ours and asked him did he know anyone elsewhere that could sponsor him for a visa.  He doesn’t have anyone anywhere else. He just looked at me and said “I am going to die here”.  He is early 20s.
    They have no faith in anything anymore including the court process. Of course every time that the court process stalls it brings on those feelings again.
    The reality is the hopelessness and boredom, they really feel like there is nothing left for them now.
    Australia is in the process of building roads between the centre and Lorengau.   
    A lot of the refugees don’t want to come to Australia: they just want to go somewhere and be safe.  Unfortunately it appears that Australia does not have any third country willing to take them.

Australia was not the attraction: they just wanted safety and certainty. Instead, human beings get this.

Unfortunately, the government still insists on pursuing this policy, accusing the people who speak out against it of exaggerating and inventing the damning evidence. But the government is lying. And now we can see their plan clearly: they do not care that we on Manus and Nauru are refugees. They only want us to take their bribes and go back to certain danger, death and persecution. In response to overwhelming evidence of abuse, their only answer is ‘take our money, and go back to your country of origin.’
    After 40 months – more than three years – no-one has been settled on Manus Island. The few in Port Moresby are struggling to survive. Now several more of us have been attacked by local people who do not want us here. Therefore we can only say that we are official hostages.
    Saving people’s lives at sea is being used as a cover to implement this grossly inhumane and immoral policy. Turnbull and Dutton claim they are on the side of compassion. But this policy has not had any achievement; it has just caused intense suffering and extreme agony for asylum seekers in detention, while pushing other vulnerable people into harms’ way elsewhere and damaging the reputation of Australia in worldwide public opinion. True compassion comes not just when it suits political ends, but when it involves perspective-taking: recognising our shared humanity and imagining what you would have done in another’s shoes. Now, more than ever, it is time for Australian people to yell loudly at the government to urge it to confess that the policy of Nauru and Manus resettlement has reached a dead end, and to urge the government to bring an end to this cruel policy as soon as possible.



1 comment:

  1. Richard McGrath3 Nov 2016, 11:17:00

    Peter, this issue is not as black and white as you paint it. The detainees on Manus and Nauru came largely from Muslim countries in the Middle East, flew to Indonesia and boarded boats to travel the short distance to Christmas Island where they were not turned away but brought ashore, medically screened and treated where indicated, fed, and placed in air conditioned accommodation away from the political persecution from which they claimed to be escaping. It can't have escaped your attention that these asylum seekers could have sought refuge in several countries before reaching Australia - notably Indonesia and Malaysia. They deliberately choose Australia, and my guess is that this is because of high wages and a generous welfare system. I think it is dishonest to look at the situation and ignore context. I am not happy about what is happening on Manus and Nauru, and believe it would have been cheaper to house these asylum seekers in Australia while the taxpayers funded welfare system was dismantled, after which time the asylum seekers could be released into the community. With the welfare state in place, it is my view that to accept unlimited numbers of asylum seekers into Australia and make taxpayers foot the bill would be an initiation of force against Australian taxpayers by their government and sufficient grounds for insurrection and violent revolution, political assassinations and the like. Asylum seekers should be privately sponsored and not allowed to become parasites on the productive. The only viable solution as I see it is for a private army to liberate parts of the Middle East and set up a new country for anyone who wanted to live there under peaceful conditions under the rule of (non-Sharia) law.


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