In another bastardly act the Howard Govt has put the lives of 5 Papuans at risk. The SMH reported, "Australia broke international law and endangered the lives of five Papuan asylum seekers by secretly sending the men back to Papua New Guinea, refugee advocates say.
In a move critics allege was designed to appease Indonesia, the federal government admitted deporting the five Papuans, who sailed from PNG to reach Saibai Island, in Australia's Torres Strait territory, on August 21.
The men were unable to claim asylum in Australia because the Howard government has excised Saibai Island from the country's migration zone."
A refugee and immigration lawyer David Manne says the Australian immigration’s handling of the case is of concern.
“There’s a very serious question about whether there has been a circumvention of the very requirement to properly assess the protection needs of an asylum seeker in Australian territory, and as part of that to determine whether they are a refugee and if they are, to ensure that they’re not sent back to a situation which is unsafe.”
Toadying up to Indonesia has become a abiding hallmark of this Govt. The furore over the previous group of asylum seekers has ensured new arrivals will be treated very differently. Sanctuary seekers can expect to be put in harm's way to appease Jakarta's sensitivities. Watch the Govt jocks come out of the woodwork to deny any conspiracy or appeasement strategy.
Yeah, yeah, and as usual only refugee sympathizers and the odd brave journalist will have their heart rate raised. Poor fella my country.
RightsBase, a fellow traveler in the blog-o-sphere, reports, "Last week retired academic Peter McGregor was arrested in the Australian parliament for attempting to arrest Prime Minister John Howard, Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, Attorney-General Philip Ruddock and Defence Minister Brendan Nelson, accusing the four of war crimes...Mr McGregor issued the following warrant for a citizen’s arrest, before he himself was arrested for ‘unlawful entry on inclosed lands’ [sic]:
Warrant for the Citizen’s Arrest of John Howard, Alexander Downer, Philip Ruddock & Brendan Nelson:
John Howard, Prime Minister; Alexander Downer, Minister for Foreign Affairs; Philip Ruddock, Attorney-General; & Brendan Nelson, Minister for Defence are hereby charged, to be tried by the International Criminal Court, with:
1. Planning, preparing, initiating or waging a war of aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances - VI(i) Nuremberg Principles
2. Participating in a common plan or conspiracy for accomplishment of the above - V(ii) Nuremberg Principles
3. Participating in the use of cluster bombs in contravention of the Australian Mines Convention Act 1998
4. Participating in the use of weapons of mass destruction in breach of the Geneva Conventions, including Fuel Air Explosives which cause death by asphyxiation
5. Conspiring to pervert the course of justice by:
(i) abandoning habeas corpus both in the domestic ‘anti-terror’ laws and in international policy; and
(ii) covering up or defending the use of torture and over breaches of the Geneva Conventions, the International Covenant on Civil & Political Rights, & the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, against Australian – and other - citizens, at Guantánamo Bay
6. Failing in its duty to protect Australian citizens overseas, and conspiring to continue the illegal detention of Australian citizens without trial or charge for over 5 years
7. Demonising and incarcerating asylum seekers under the policies of mandatory detention and fortress Australia. Such policies contravene the legal principle of habeas corpus and have induced undue suffering and mental illness for detainees.
Dated this Wednesday 19th September 2007.
Signature(s): Peter McGregor (mcgregorpeter [at] yahoo.com.au)
Issued & authorized by Citizens against War Crimes."