Human Rights

Justice Anna Katzmann grants asylum seeker leave to appeal to federal court

In a hearing in the federal court on Thursday, federal court judge, Justice Anna Katzmann has granted an asylum seeker who had their personal details exposed online in a major data breach, leave to appeal to the federal court.

In a hearing in the federal court on Thursday, federal court judge, Justice Anna Katzmann has granted an asylum seeker who had their personal details exposed online in a major data breach, leave to appeal to the federal court.
In the federal court appeal on Thursday the asylum seeker, represented by Shane Prince, argued the initial decision by the federal circuit court to refuse an application for an injunction preventing their removal from Australia was made in error. The Counsel for the immigration minister rejected these submissions.

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Manus Island asylum seeker on life support in Brisbane hospital

According to the Refugee Action Coalition, an asylum seeker who developed septicaemia after cutting his foot at the Manus Island offshore processing centre has been declared brain dead in Brisbane’s Mater Hospital overnight.

Refugee Action Coalition spokesman Ian Rintoul said an Iranian asylum seeker sought medical attention for days on Manus Island for the infection and he was flown to PNG for treatment. He suffered a heart attack while in PNG and was flown to Brisbane.

Australian Greens senator Sarah Hanson-Young has demanded an explanation from Immigration Minister Scott Morrison saying this is 'disgraceful.'

A spokeswoman for Immigration Minister Scott Morrison said "the government has consistently focussed on the care of this young man and his family, as well as respecting their privacy.”

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UN Human Rights Chief slams own Security Council

UN Human Rights Chief Navy Pillay has slammed the organisation’s Security Council for its ineffectiveness in Syria and other difficult conflicts, saying its members have often put national interests ahead of stopping mass atrocities.

Ms Pillay, whose term as high commissioner for human rights ends this month, said greater responsiveness would have saved hundreds of thousands of lives, labelling the Syrian conflict as an “uncontrollable process whose eventual limits” the world cannot predict.

Ms Pillay also spoke of conflicts in Afghanistan, Central African Republic, Congo, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Somalia, South Sudan, Ukraine and Gaza, saying these crises demonstrated the full cost of the international community’s failure to prevent conflict.

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Immigration Minister interrogated by HRC

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison is expected to be interrogated about children being held in immigration detention in a human rights inquiry in Canberra today.

The inquiry was launched by the Human Rights Commission in February, and is investigating the impact of detention on the health, wellbeing and development of children.

The Commission has held three public hearings in Sydney and Melbourne, which have heard explosive allegations from psychiatrist Peter Young, who claimed the Immigration Department tried to cover up the scale of mental illness among child asylum seekers by asking for figures documenting the problems to be withdrawn.

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Curtin detention center asylum seekers starve for justice

Eleven asylum seekers in Curtin detention center in the Kimberley of Western Australia have recently taken part in a four day hunger strike due to the lack of any explanation for the long delays in the processing of their protection claims and or for the delays in processing applications for bridging visas which would enable these asylum seekers to be released from detention.

The hunger strike was suspended on Saturday the 9th of August after a Serco officer promised them a meeting to discuss the status of their bridging visa applications. The meeting took place yesterday.

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Iranian Parliament bans most forms of contraception to boost population

The Iranian parliament has banned contraception, including vasectomies and other birth control measures in a measure to boost the nation’s population.

The move has been spearheaded by Ayatollah Khamenei, who wants to boost Iran’s population to strengthen the country’s national identity and combat supposed western influence.

Iran’s population has been steadily decreasing over the years, but opposers to the move have said this decision is a means to keep Iran’s educated women relegated to housewife and mother roles.

Its a reversal from the Ayatollah’s previous stance on the issue, who has used the motto “fewer kids, better life” in the past.

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Mixed reactions to Federal back-down on changes to Racial Discrimination Act

Free speech advocates are furious at the Federal Government’s decision to back down from it’s promise to remove restrictions on race that merely “hurt the feelings” of others on the basis of race.

While the decision to retain the controversial section 18C of the Racial Discrimination act was widely welcomed by ethnic and religious groups there has been wide condemnation from many commentators and interest groups. Human Rights Commissioner Tim Wilson has called it “disappointing” and said that there is nothing more dangerous to a united Australia than laws that create legal privileges for some on the basis of their race that others don’t enjoy”.

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China charges economics professor with separatism

China has charged economics professor Ilham Toht with separatism, as a result of his continued support for Xinjiang efforts to reach independence from China.

The government regards the region as an inseparable part of China.

At the same time as the arrest of the professor, chinese security forces flooded the area to set an end to anti-government protests.

The UN called for his release and stated concerns about the lack of information of his whereabout, well-being and access to legal protection.

Should professor IIham Thot be convicted of fomenting separatism he could go to prison for several years.

His case has been handed to the city council and he is now awaiting trial.

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Abbott government accused of neglect and abuse

Church leaders have accused the Abbott government of abusing and neglecting children in the immigration detention system.

A group of Catholic and Christian church leaders will release a report on Wednesday calling for the government and the United Nations to protect the welfare of unaccompanied children who seek asylum in Australia.

The Protecting the Lonely Children report "paints a harrowing picture of neglect and abuse", the group says.

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Australia to give $5 million for aid in Gaza

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has announced that Australia will provide $5 million in emergency humanitarian assistance for the people of Gaza.

Ms Bishop said that the government is deeply concerned about the continuing violence, which has been escalating over the past two weeks.

Over 1000 Palestinians, including many civilians, and 43 Israeli soldiers have so far been killed in the conflict. The airstrike campaigns have also destroyed many buildings and essential services such as hospitals, and has forced many families from their homes.

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