From Iran with love – young asylum seeker claims Mackellar prize

Young Asylum Seeker

A young asylum seeker who has been learning English for only nine months had a shock win in the Dorothea Mackellar Poetry Awards, announced this morning  in Gunnedah. Maryam Sathat Sobhani took out first place in the Learning Assistance and Special Education Primary category. The 12-year-old fled Iran with her parents Sayed and Roya two years ago. They arrived in Indonesia ... Read More »

Scott Morrison at the Human Rights Commission

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Minister Morrison, assisted by the Secretary of his department, continued his aggressive ways at the hearing on August 22. He said that his policies discouraged asylum seekers risking their lives at sea. He described himself as the champion of the voiceless, ‘the ones that are at the bottom of the ocean’.  He clearly wants to occupy the high moral ground. ... Read More »

Agents on ‘secret’ immigration blacklist have their names published

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A blacklist of registered migration agents and lawyers the Department of Immigration tried to keep secret has been reproduced online, escalating calls for an inquiry and a possible class action against the department. The Law Council of Australia and the Migration Institute of Australia have requested urgent meetings with departmental heads, after one of three such lists was published on a ... Read More »

To South Sudan’s woes, add famine — 50,000 kids at risk of death

Makeshift refu­gee camps in Sudan. (James Sprankle/For the Washington Post)

With war and weather pushing thousands to the brink of starvation, aid workers in South Sudan are warning of a large-scale humanitarian disaster. (James Sprankle and Ty McCormick/The Washington Post) MALAKAL, South Sudan — Nyarony Choing is as old as South Sudan. And like the world’s newest nation, she has been to hell and back before her fourth birthday. When ... Read More »

Private firms ‘are using detained immigrants as cheap labour’

The Yarl's Wood detention centre, Bedfordshire. A detainee who worked as a cleaner said she believed they were a substitute for staff paid the minimum wage. Photograph: Sean Dempsey/PA Archive/Press Association Ima

G4S and Serco saving millions by paying detainees as little as £1 an hour to cook and clean, claim campaigners Jump to comments Campaigners have criticised private firms for using immigration detainees as cheap labour inside detention centres after research suggested this saves them millions of pounds. Some detainees said they were being paid as little as £1 an hour ... Read More »

NGOs urge legal definition of ‘temporary resident status’ for Syrian refugees

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A group of NGOs has called for legislation formally defining the status of temporary residents, expressing concern about the latest attacks targeting Syrian refugees in several Turkish cities. Stressing that Syrians are only able to enjoy limited rights and cannot officially apply for asylum in Turkey due to geographic restrictions, the NGOs said their rights should be clearly determined by ... Read More »

Tamil asylum-seeker court case may see UN intervene

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Refugee advocates are challenging the legality of the month-long detention of 157 asylum seekers on a customs vessel in June  Jump to comments The United Nations may become involved in the case of the Tamil asylum seekers who were detained on an Australian customs boat, with a court hearing to take place in Canberra in October. A brief high court ... Read More »