MEDIA RELEASE - 2.5.12
DARWIN REFUGEE PROTESTERS REMOVED TO CHRISTMAS ISLAND. SERCO’S
ARBITRARY PUNISHMENT REGIME MUST BE STOPPED
Refugee advocates have condemned the latest moves by Serco and the
Department of immigration to maintain their extra-judicial punishment
of asylum seekers.
Yesterday, (Tuesday 1 May) five asylum seekers were moved from
Darwin’s Northern Immigration Detention Centre( NIDC) to Christmas
Island. Four of them were the long term Iranian asylum seekers who
staged a roof top protest at NIDC, less than two weeks ago.
“Serco and immigration are making good their threat to ruthlessly
punish anyone who is involved in any kind of protest action. This
extra-judicial punishment regime is a complete violation of asylum
seekers’ human right and it must be stopped,” said Ian Rintoul,
spokesperson for the Refuge Action Coalition.
“The protesters have not been charged with any offence yet they are
being exiled to punishment compounds on Christmas Island. Serco is
becoming the judge, jury and punisher of asylum seekers.
“Serco’s punishment regime is like something out of ‘One Flew Over the
Cuckoo’s Nest” with asylum seekers subjected to isolation and
mistreatment in order for them to learn to be compliant with a
dysfunctional and damaging detention regime that is literally driving
them crazy. The Catch-22 of NIDC is that you would have to be crazy
not to protest,” said Rintoul.
“We are also shocked to hear that NIDC is once again being filled with
asylum seekers. We were told by DIAC regional manager that NIDC was
being closed, yet Afghans from Wickham Point have been moved there and
now more people are being there from Christmas Island.
“NIDC is a hell-hole; a nightmare of self-harm and attempted suicides
that should be closed.”
For more information contact Ian Rintoul mob 0417 275 713