Refugee Action Collective (Vic)

Free the refugees! Let them land, let them stay!

Archives July 2016

1pm 27 Aug | Post-Election Rally

Poster: aug27_rally_poster_ A5 double sided

When: 1pm Saturday 27th August

Where: State Library of Victoria (corner of Swanston and LaTrobe Sts)

state library

*Close the camps and bring the refugees here

*Permanent protection

*Stop Boat turnbacks

The recent election result sees no change in the policy of off shore processing for refugees. Turning back boats and incarceration of refugees in detention camps is still a reality for refugees who are innocent victims of Australia’s illegal system of offshore processing. While the election changes nothing for refugees, it showed once again that refugee scapegoating does not win votes. Turnbull’s grip on power is weaker despite maintaining brutal anti­-refugee policies and rhetoric. The crisis in the offshore camps must be made into a political crisis for the Coalition. So join RAC to defeat the inhuman refugee policies of the Australian government.

For more information contact Lucy 0404728104

MEDIA RELEASE | PNG SUPREME COURT WILL CONSIDER ORDERS OVER MANUS REFUGEE CASES

MEDIA RELEASE

PNG SUPREME COURT WILL CONSIDER ORDERS OVER MANUS REFUGEE CASES

A hearing of the PNG Supreme Court in Port Moresby on Monday 25 July, will rule on five test cases of refugees on Manus Island as the basis for issuing appropriate orders and guidelines for the release of the detainees, and the resettlement of refugees as the beginning of the process to finally close the detention centre.

The court is specifically seeking submissions regarding which government is actually responsible for the asylum seekers and where will refugees who do not wish to settle in PNG, be sent.

All five cases put before the court state they were forcibly taken from Australia to PNG and wish to be returned to Australia. Lawyers acting for the refugees have indicated that acting on the basis of those instructions, they will seek orders for the release of the refugees and their return to Australia.

The Supreme Court ruled in April, that the agreement, between PNG and the Australian government, to establish the Manus Island detention centre was unconstitutional and unlawful. It ordered that the Australian and PNG government must take immediate steps to close the detention centre.

Asylum seekers and refugees are now called ‘residents’; and the compounds are now deemed to be ‘areas’. But the detention prison has not closed, and the ‘residents’ are being held unlawfully.

The Supreme Court ruled in April this year that people had been unlawfully transferred from Australia to Manus Island and that there was no lawful basis to keep them in PNG unless they actually wished to stay in PNG.

The court will also consider whether the current process of refugee determination is constitutional or not. This decision will have far reaching effect for all those who have been taken to Manus Island, including those who have negative decisions and 61 those who have refused to participate in the doubtful PNG refugee process.

The issue of compensation for the numerous human rights breaches inflicted on all those imprisoned on Manus is also set to be dealt with at Monday’s hearing.

“The government has done all it can to ignore the PNG court’s ruling that Manus is unlawful. It has done all it can to stall closing the detention centre. But time is running out for the Turnbull government,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“It is time the Australian government faced up to its responsibility for the people who came to Australia seeking protection but were sent offshore. Over 1000 people on Manus are still waiting for justice four months after the PNG Supreme Court ruling. It is time for the Turnbull government to end the mistreatment and bring all those on Manus to the mainland.”

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713