This excessive spending raises serious raise questions about the government’s long-term planning for refugees stuck in limbo.
If history is any guide, the new US president’s forward-thinking approach toward refugee resettlement could help drive Australia’s commitments to refugee protection, too.
Recent history shows politicians should think twice before using refugees and asylum seekers for electoral gain.
Jacqui Lambie has made a secret deal with the Coalition government to secure the repeal of medevac.
Now that medevac has been repealed, people will once again rely on ministerial discretion for a medical transfer.
Lambie, everyone says, is “keeping her cards close to her chest”.
The government would be willing to put a feast on the table to get a win on the medevac repeal, but this is a piece of legislation on which Lambie should not contemplate any deals.
Asylum seekers stare at media from behind a fence at the Manus Island detention centre, 2014.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison can learn from the pitfalls that contributed to the downfall of the Rudd and Gillard governments.
Iranian theatre company Verbatim Theatre Group performed Manus as part of this year’s Adelaide Festival.
Mohammad Sadeq Zarjouyan
This verbatim drama presenting the stories of eight Iranian asylum seekers detained on their island prisons delivers uncomfortable home truths.
Crossbenchers Kerryn Phelps, Julia Banks and Rebekah Sharkie celebrate the passing of the “Medivac” law through the House of Representatives.
Since the Tampa affair in 2001, successive governments have been anxious to be seen as “hard-line” on asylum seekers, but the cost – to people and the country – has been too high.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and other Coalition MPs described Labor as weak on borders after the opposition and the crossbench voted to pass a bill allowing medical transfers from Manus and Nauru.
A refugee law expert on a week of ‘reckless’ rhetoric and a new way to process asylum seeker claims.
The Conversation 44 MB (download)
Today on Trust Me, I'm An Expert, a refugee legal expert busts myths about how proposed medical transfer rules would work, and described some of this week's border security rhetoric as 'reckless'.
Many asylum seekers on Manus Island and Nauru are at risk of suicide.
WORLD VISION/NICK RALPH
A bill to allow for asylum seeker on Nauru and Manus Island to be transferred to Australia for medical and psychiatric treatment has passed both Houses. How will it change things for those detained?
Shorten has been caught every which way in the last few days.
After Shorten was briefed by security officials and with enormous political pressure coming from the government, Labor moved back from its support of the bill as it has come out of the Senate.
Behrouz Boochani won the $100,000 Victorian Prize for Literature, and the Prize for Non-Fiction, at the 2019 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards.
Behrouz Boochani, an asylum seeker currently detained on Manus Island, has won Australia’s richest literary prize. The win commands the question, ‘what makes an Australian writer?’
Detail from Alex Seton’s A Durable Solution? - a series of memorial plaques naming the 12 men who have died under our ‘care’.
Sullivan & Strumpf
Alex Seton’s sculpture A Durable Solution? dominates the protest exhibition at the forthcoming ALP national conference. He has also created an official memorial to Australian soldiers killed in Afghanistan
If refugee and asylum seekers are not resettled in Australia, the humanitarian crisis will only worsen.
As families are airlifted off Nauru for medical treatment, there is at last a glimmer of hope that a long-standing and cruel policy might finally be put to rest.
Asylum seekers protesting on Manus Island last year.
Refugee Action Coalition handout
Boochani bears witness to the deterioration of the human spirit on Manus Island, where he’s been detained with hundreds of other asylum seekers for the last five years.
Behrouz Boochani photographed on Manus Island.
Jason Garman/Amnesty International via AAP
Behrouz Boochani wrote his memoir of incarceration on Manus Island one text message at a time. Translating this work of ‘horrific surrealism’ from Farsi to English was a profoundly philosophical experience.
Some of the members of a soccer team trapped in a section of Tham Luang cave in Thailand.
ROYAL THAI NAVY/AAP
Of course we should have sympathy for the soccer team trapped in the cave. We should extend similar compassion to those caught up in long-term crises that are harder to tackle.
Offshore detainees suffer deliberately inflicted harm from their incarceration.
The most morally monstrous actions might work as deterrents but be unacceptable morally even to the most casual conscience.
How will our children view this period in Manus in the future?
Michelle Rooney, 2017
The detention centre for asylum seekers generated some economic benefits for Manus Islanders. But how would their forefathers have reasoned with the incarceration of men in exchange for development and money?
The view from Angel Island in San Francisco Bay, where Australian immigrants were detained. They renamed it “Devil’s Island”.
In 1921 the US imposed strict immigration quotas on Australians and detained the excess arrivals in terrible conditions. Contrast this with today’s treatment of asylum seekers on Manus Island and Nauru.