« Australia’s treatment of asylum seekers: Reflections from visit to Sri Lanka » by Rebecca Lim

We can’t have it both ways. We know we are sending some people back to danger but there is no monitoring or political will to ensure their safety and positive reintegration. The Sri Lankan government has its own challenges to re-build its economy and to ensure security and safety for its people, including returnees and deportees from abroad. A network of support for this group of vulnerable people is needed to alleviate fears and provide economic support.

via: http://groundviews.org/2015/04/20/australias-treatment-of-asylum-seekers-reflections-from-visit-to-sri-lanka/

« Tamil asylum seeker held at sea wasn’t asked basic questions, high court hears » by Ben Doherty

«  »In the case of the 157 Tamil asylum seekers, customs officials asked no questions about the asylum seekers’ safety in India or reasons for leaving Sri Lanka. They asked only “brief biographical details,” the court heard.

Ron Merkel QC, acting for the asylum seekers, told the court sending the Tamils back to India, where they had no right to be registered as refugees, no work rights, or access to health or education services, was a breach of international law. The asylum seekers also faced the risk of being sent back to Sri Lanka from India. » »

via: http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2014/oct/14/tamil-asylum-seeker-held-at-sea-wasnt-asked-basic-questions-high-court-hears

« First Batch of Army Recruits from Jaffna to Pass Out on Sept.20 » by News.lk

Asylum seekers who sought protection in Australia and were returned to Sri Lanka say they have been tortured, in new claims aired on SBS.

In an SBS Dateline program aired on Tuesday night two asylum seekers – known as Bhanu and Narada – made allegations they had been tortured after being returned to Sri Lanka from Australia.

via: http://www.news.lk/news/sri-lanka/item/3001-first-batch-of-army-recruits-from-jaffna-to-pass-out-on-sept-20

« Sydney University bows to request from Sri Lankan military and police » by Oliver Laughland

The University of Sydney has withdrawn invitations for two Sri Lankan human rights organisations to an international conference at the request of the Sri Lankan military, angering campaigners.

via: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/12/sydney-university-bows-to-request-from-sri-lankan-military-and-police

« Abbott Government Must Deny Extremist Entry to Australia » by The Greens (Australia)

Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne has called on the Abbott government to deny an extremist alleged to have masterminded anti-Muslim violence in Sri Lanka entry to Australia.

Gnanasara Thero, who has been instrumental in inciting hatred against religious minorities in Sri Lanka and who is the General Secretary of the extremist Bodu Bala Sena sect, has applied for a visa and intends to tour Australia. Gnanasara Thero has reportedly been denied entry to the UK, France and the US.

via: http://greens.org.au/node/5619

« Sri Lankan asylum seekers arrive in Australia after weeks held at sea » by Reuters

SYDNEY, July 28 (Reuters) – A group of 157 migrants, thought to be Sri Lankan asylum seekers, arrived at a detention camp in Australia, government officials said on Monday, after having been held at sea by authorities for almost a month.

via: http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/07/28/sri-lanka-australia-asylum-idINL4N0Q31E920140728

« High-seas prison for 150 Tamils » by Michael Gordon

« More than 150 asylum seekers are being held behind locked doors on a customs ship, in rooms without windows and with no idea where they are or where the Abbott government plans to take them. »

via: http://www.theage.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/highseas-prison-for-150-tamils-20140716-3c1o2.html

« Asylum seekers will be handed to police on return, Sri Lanka confirms » by Paul Farrell, Oliver Laughland and Melissa Davey

Labor, the Greens, Clive Palmer and a group of 53 legal experts have called on the federal government to reveal how asylum seekers are being assessed on board customs vessels, as the Sri Lankan government confirmed that 41 asylum seekers being returned via an unprecedented on-water transfer to the Sri Lankan navy will be handed to the police when they arrive back.

via: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jul/07/asylum-seekers-will-be-handed-to-police-on-return-sri-lanka-confirms

« Australia at risk of returning asylum seekers to danger in Sri Lanka » by Refugee Council of Australia

Opens PDF: Statement from Refugee Council of Australia.

« Australia risks committing the most flagrant of all breaches under the Refugee Convention if it removes Tamil asylum seekers off Christmas Island to Sri Lanka without investigating their claims for refugee status, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) said today. »

« Australia promises to give 72 hours notice before returning Sri Lanka asylum seekers » by Straits Times

SYDNEY (REUTERS) – Australia promised on Tuesday not to return a boatload of asylum seekers to Sri Lanka without providing 72 hours notice, a move hailed by human rights lawyers as a minor victory in a case that has raise concerns about the country’s tough immigration policy.

via: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/asia/australianew-zealand/story/australia-promises-give-72-hours-notice-returning-sri-lanka-asy#sthash.iIXVUegI.dpufhttp://www.straitstimes.com/news/asia/australianew-zealand/story/australia-promises-give-72-hours-notice-returning-sri-lanka-asy

source: www.straitstimes.com

« The life and awful death of a Tamil asylum seeker in Australia » by Oliver Laughland

« Out in the living room, in this small, shared house in Geelong, Victoria, a shrine sits on the dining table. A wreath of white roses, chrysanthemums and daisies circles a framed photo of the 29-year-old Tamil asylum seeker, who set himself on fire on 31 May. A glass of milk and a glass of water sit – full to the brim – next to the flowers, left behind for Seemanpillai’s spirit to sip, according to a friend. He is the second Tamil asylum seeker to self-immolate in Australia over the past year – the first survived. Seemanpillai died on 1 June. »

via: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jun/05/the-life-and-awful-death-of-a-tamil-asylum-seeker-in-australia

source: www.theguardian.com

« Australia asylum seekers find refuge in cricket » by Phil Mercer

« Ocean 12 are sporting warriors like no other. Padded up and steeled for action in a suburban league in Sydney, the team is made up of Tamil asylum seekers competing for a place in the finals of a global cricket competition. »

via: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-27498287

source: www.bbc.com

« Sri Lanka Tamils subjected to horrific abuse after 2009 civil war, says report » by Paul Farrell

« Horrifying details of sexual and physical abuse, including forced oral sex, anal rape and water torture, have been documented in a new report on Sri Lanka’s treatment of Tamils after the end of the 2009 civil war, which includes testimony from returned asylum seekers and raises further questions about Australia’s deportation of Tamils. »

via: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/21/sri-lanka-tamils-subjected-to-horrific-abuse-after-2009-civil-war-says-report

The full report with witness testimonies can be downloaded from here: http://www.stop-torture.com/

« Manus Island detention centre inhuman, violates prohibition against torture: Amnesty International » by Conor Duffy

Manus Island’s detention centre has been described as cruel, inhuman, degrading and violating prohibitions against torture in a detailed report by Amnesty International.

via: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-12-11/manus-island-violates-prohibition-against-torture-amnesty/5150664

source: www.abc.net.au

« Former Sri Lankan military officer Dinesh Perera now acting operations manager of Manus Island detention centre » by Jeff Waters

Human rights and asylum seeker advocates are condemning a decision to employ a former Sri Lankan military officer as the acting operations manager of the Manus Island detention centre.

« It’s completely inappropriate for anyone with links to the Sri Lankan military to be in charge of the welfare and well-being of vulnerable asylum seekers, including Tamils….There’s a high likelihood that the Tamils being held there are fleeing persecution at the hands of the Sri Lankan military. This isn’t about the activities of this one man. It’s about [the] way that Australia takes care of the asylum seekers who are in its custody. The placing of an ex-military commander from a source country for refugees like Sri Lanka highlights Australia’s complete insensitivity to the very real risks and suffering that those asylum seekers are fleeing. »

via: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-02-24/former-sri-lanka-military-officer-has-role-at-manus-centre/5280412

source: www.abc.net.au