Another forced repatriation looms

The Guardian, 11 August 2015

A 21-year-old Afghan asylum seeker whose brothers were killed by the Taliban and whose father disappeared was set to be deported from Australia to Kabul on Tuesday despite a wave of violence in the city that has left more than 50 dead.
Friends said the man was “terrified” of being returned to Afghanistan.

ABC News Online, 11 August 2015

The Afghan government wants to stem the flow of forced returns from Australia and other countries and, in recent weeks, has blocked the return of the man involved.
Tonight, Australia is again trying to send him home, in a case that could serve as a precedent for hundreds of other Afghans in his position.

Still no respite in sight for Nadir

There has been little change in Nadir's situation over the past week. He is still awaiting the results of his International Treaties Obligation assessment and his agonizing wait persists.
   Please continue to pressure our politicians and send messages of encouragement to Nadir at
Sunday 23 August, 11am
Buddies meeting, 24 King St, Buderim.
Chairperson: Val Ross 5476
Friday 28 August, 7pm
Benefit concert: Songs of hope and healing (see below)
Wednesday 23 September, 6:00-7:30pm
Public lecture: Moving beyond good intentions – the road to refugee rights (details on the Griffith Law School website)
Sunday 27 September, 11am
Buddies meeting, 24 King St, Buderim

Songs of hope and healing, QPAC

Friday 28 August, 7pm, QPAC Concert Hall, Brisbane
To raise funds for Friends of the Home of Expressive Arts and Learning (FHEAL), which provides creative arts therapy to young people of refugee backgrounds and newly arrived refugees. 
Featuring various artists and special guest star Lior.
Tickets $40 each. BOOK NOW or phone 13 62 46.
Wanted: Online support for Chanelle
As reported previously, our South African asylum seeker friend and poet, Chanelle (Cleo Patra), has recently completed her first anthology, available for digital download here.
   Her dream now is to have her poems published in hard copy as well. Chanelle is running two online campaigns to help achieve her goal. Check them out and see if you can support her quest!
Sunset sunrise sunset soon a new day will dawn and
GoFundMe’ campaign

Petition: Help me to release my wife from detention

Milad Jafari, iPetitions, 8 July 2015, updated 8 August 2015

‘Loving and caring for my beautiful wife is not crime but it’s made feel like that because she is an asylum seeker."  Milad Jafari's wife Mojgan Shamsalipoor has been forcibly moved from the Brisbane Immigration Transit Accommodation centre to detention in Darwin.
There will be a rally held in support of Mojgan and Milad in Brisbane on Friday afternoon 14 August.
Full story            Sign the petition            Rally details

Learn English Holiday, 19–24 July 2015

A selection of photos from the recent Learn English Holiday.
   One of the highlights was the shared dinner at Kayla’s place in Buderim, attended by a happy group of asylum seekers and Buddies hosts. The variety of dishes from different parts of the world combined to create a scrumptious feast!

The Greens: Safer pathways for refugees

27 July 2015

There is no one solution to helping refugees, but the government continues to see this as a border protection issue where refugees are punished for arriving, rather than a humanitarian problem. The Greens have a clear policy to stop deaths at sea without simply pushing people out of our waters to die elsewhere.

School community reels at the removal of student

Life Matters, 12 August 2015

Mojgan is in year 12 at Yeronga State High. She also recently got married. Since her claim for asylum was rejected she has been in Brisbane Immigration Transit Accommodation centre. But on Friday, she was taken involuntarily from her Brisbane residence to a Darwin detention centre.

ASRC's Food Justice Truck launches in Melbourne

Broadsheet, 12 August 2015

The world’s first not-for-profit mobile grocery made its debut in Melbourne this week, in support of Victoria's 10,000 asylum seekers. It is providing them the most basic means to put together a healthy meal and raise awareness of the problem of food insecurity for asylum seekers living in the community.

'All aboard the bipartisan ship' is the new reality

Overland, 11 August 2015

In the wake of the ALP refusal to rule out boat turn-backs, some have suggested that refugee advocates should accept the new reality of bipartisan consensus. This argument has been publicly made by at least two organisations providing services to refugees, Save the Children and Welcome to Australia.

Teachers, pupils protest detention of Iranian student

ABC News Online, 8 August 2015

An Australian resident whose Iranian wife has been put back into detention after more than two years in the community says he will do anything to keep her with him. Milad Jafari said his wife Mojgan Shamsalipoor was tortured in Iran and would not leave Australia voluntarily. 

Rape victim refused medical treatment in Australia

ABC News Online, 11 August 2015

The family of a female Iranian asylum seeker, who was allegedly raped three months ago in Nauru, say the Federal Government has refused to allow her to be treated in Australia. In May Nazanin Bagheri left the Nauru detention centre to visit friends on the island. She was raped as she made her way back.

Europe must not mimic Australia’s tough talk

The Guardian, 10 August 2015

The language that is used now by governments to describe asylum seekers is a demonstration of why the debate has become so polarised, so emotive, and so intractable. The evolution of Australian government language on asylum seekers has been a tortuous one.

How Mohammad Nasim Najafi died in a detention centre

The Saturday Paper, 8 August 2015

Three weeks ago, a group of criminals broke into Mohammad’s room in the Yongah Hill Immigration Detention Centre, and beat him. Half of the detainees are convicted criminals rather than asylum seekers. Nasim managed to escape the attackers and took shelter in an office.

Cost of detainee flights between centres a secret

The West Australian, 10 August 2015

The immigration department is refusing to say how much it spends on charter planes to transfer asylum seekers between detention centres. It confirmed it had transferred 52 asylum seekers from Perth to Darwin on July 31 — the day Hazara  Mohammad Nasim Najafi died at Yongah Hill.

Government admits turning back 633 asylum seekers

The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 August 2015

Boats carrying more than 630 asylum seekers have been turned back under the Abbott government including a vessel that was returned to Vietnam last month, Immigration Minister Peter Dutton says, in a rare release of usually secret details of “on-water operations”.
Other stories in the news:
The New Daily: Peter Dutton named in expenses scandal
The (un) Australian: Satire: AFP claims altruism behind Sri Lanka support
ABC News Online: Student mentors help child refugees adapt to life at SA schools
Sydney Morning Herald: Why Ian Chappell is embarrassed about our treatment of refugees
The Age: Politicians must stop using language to strip refugees of their humanity
Thank you to Jenny Hughes and Diana Woolley for their contributions to this edition.

Please send contributions for the newsletter and/or the website to the editor. 

EDITOR: Bronwyn Bell
Please send photos or articles to Lindel Greggery

The Buddies Refugee Support Group is a Sunshine Coast group which advocates for just and compassionate treatment of refugees, consistent with the human rights standards which Australia has developed and endorsed.
   We support policies towards refugees and asylum seekers that reflect respect, decency and traditional Australian generosity to those in need, while advancing Australia’s international standing and national interests.
   We are an independent community group and meet on the 4th Sunday of each month at 11am, 24 King Street Buderim.

Confidentiality  Your email address is completely confidential. The Bulletin is sent Bcc [Blind carbon copy] and no-one else sees your email address.
To contribute to Buddies   Buddies’ fundraising contributes to refugee and asylum seeker support. You can direct debit to:
Suncorp Bank, BSB 484-799     
Account No: 605927994    
Account name: Buddies Refugee Support Group
Or you can contribute to ‘The Box’ at our meetings and events. Your donations are much appreciated by those we help.