When: 2-4pm Sunday 8th October
Where: State Library of Victoria, 328 Swanston St, Melbourne
RAC’s next major rally calling to Bring Them Here will be Sun Oct 8, 2pm, State Library.
So far, speakers include:
- Richard di Natale – leader of the Australian Greens
- Taqi Azra – Hazara refugee and NUW organiser
- Craig McGregor – Victorian Allied Health Professionals Association
- David John – teacher from Manus Island
This rally comes in the wake of Dutton’s threatened ‘deadline’ for asylum seekers who have not finalised claims by October 1, and before Manus is supposed to ‘close’ again at the end of October.
Manus ‘closure’ and US deal are still no solution: As the pressure to close the unlawful detention camp on Manus increases, Dutton is desperately looking for a solution. It is possible that some people will be transferred from Manus and Nauru to the US for resettlement. However, the US has only interviewed 300 people on Manus so far and of these only 70 people have had a second interview. 8 months after the deal was proclaimed refugees are still waiting, and the Coalition government has made it clear that regardless of the US resettlement deal hundreds will be left behind. In the last week, US officials have abruptly exited Nauru, throwing further doubt and confusion over the US deal to resettle refugees. Those on Manus who are not transferred to the US are intended to be dumped in the community leaving them defenceless against attacks and robberies. PNG and Nauru are unwilling and unable to permanently resettle refugees, and both are dangerous places for refugees to live.
In June the Australian government agreed to pay $70m in compensation (only around $37,000 per person) to the 1,905 refugees kept on Manus Island. After four years of barbaric treatment and lies, it is an admission that the Australian government is responsible for their illegal imprisonment.
No amount of money can compensate for the damage done, four years of asylum seekers lives have been stolen, Reza Barati was murdered, and scores still bear the physical scars. Hamid Khazaie and Faysal Ahmed were denied appropriate medical care and their lives were lost.
Worse still, the crime for which compensation is being paid is still taking place. There is still no safe and permanet solution for the refugees on Manus. Immigration Minister Peter Dutton is culpable for the continuing abuse, he has lied about ‘fake refugees’, he has lied about the gunfire attacks on Manus on Good Friday. He has to go.
Australia is equally responsible for the false imprisonment and abuse of refugees on Nauru. For real justice, the camps must be closed and the refugees on Manus and Nauru must be brought here to safety.
On the cruel four year anniversary of the reopening of offshore processing, now is the time to step up the calls to Bring Them Here.
Australia Asia Worker Links, Australian Refugee Action Network, Australia Services Union Victorian Private Sector Branch, Catholic Office for Justice and Peace, Diaspora Action Australia, Grandmothers Against Detention of Refugee Children,Human Rights Mornington Peninsula, Kommonground Inc., Liberty Victoria, Melbourne Catholic Migrant and Refugee Office, National Tertiary Education Union, National Union of Workers, PaxChristi, People for Human Rights and Equality (PHRE), Queenscliff RAR, Refugee Advocacy Network, Rural Australians for Refugees
Contact RAC: Chris B 0403 013 183
Facebook event here
Download poster here