Australasia

Call for doctors to help looming asylum seeker mental health crisis

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These days, the inner-city suburb of Brunswick is not often associated with grinding poverty or desperation. Miki Perkins The Canberra Times Uni students riffle through upmarket op shops, a multitude of cafes churn out bespoke coffee and new, expensive apartment buildings thrust upwards along the spine of Sydney Road. But if you step off Sydney Road and walk into the calm waiting room of the Cabrini Asylum Seeker and Refugee Health Hub, an undercurrent of distress is palpable. The hub ... Read More »

Timor-Leste activists ‘shocked’ by Australia’s prosecution of spy Witness K and lawyer

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Activists compare treatment of Australian spy and lawyer Bernard Collaery to acts of Suharto-led Indonesia Helen Davidson The Guardian Timor-Leste activists have condemned the Australian government over the prosecution of Witness K and lawyer Bernard Collaery for their roles in revealing the bugging of the Timor-Leste cabinet during negotiations on an oil and gas treaty. The activists from the Movement Against the Occupation of the Timor Sea (MKOTT) have joined mounting criticism of the prosecution, comparing the act to the targeting they and ... Read More »

Ecuador ‘close’ to evicting Julian Assange from London embassy

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London: Ecuador is close to withdrawing asylum for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and evicting him from the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he has been living for six years, journalist… The Age Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno went to Britain on Friday to meet with officials to finalise a deal under which protection for Assange will be withdrawn and he will be turned over to British authorities, Greenwald… The Australian national has resided in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012, after he ... Read More »

Australia is safer than it used to be but family violence persists

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I was walking down the street the other day when I found an iPad on the footpath, propped against a neighbour’s fence. Caitlin Fitzsimmons Brisbane Times Someone had clearly lost the device, while another person had put it aside so the owner could find it but no one would tread on it in the meantime. This was the moment I knew the gentrification of my inner-city suburb was complete – even if the graffiti in the railway tunnel still says ... Read More »

Juries are often prejudiced, just like society. Should we get rid of them?

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Getting rid of juries would give some relief to victims of sexual assault, but it wouldn’t solve the real problem Bri Lee The Guardian The first mistake people often make when they talk about juries is to say that they’re necessary and important because they’ve “always” been part of the justice system. As though 1) the justice system doesn’t grow and change, and 2) the way it’s always been is the way it needs to be. There’s a lot wrong ... Read More »

Get on board with China or miss out, former World Bank vice-president warns

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Australia should accommodate China’s expansion and tone down its rhetoric or risk missing out on a decade-long economic windfall, the former chief economist of the World Bank has warned. Eryk Bagshaw The Canberra Times Cautioning that a perception of Australia being “uncomfortable” with China’s rise had reached Beijing, Justin Yifu Lin – the former senior vice-president and chief economist of the World Bank – said the resources sector would pay the price for Canberra’s actions. “What is the purpose for Australia ... Read More »

The map that shames Australia: The dark truth behind every heart on this graphic of our nation

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The severity of Australia’s domestic violence crisis has been highlighted in a shocking interactive map profiling victims and the circumstances of their death. Brooke Rolfe Daily Mail More than a thousand women and children have had their stories told in the nation-first memorial map, titled ‘Australian Femicide Map’, by The Red Heart Campaign. The Google Map commemorates lives lost at the hands of domestic abuse and was designed with the aim of raising awareness and lobbying for… Among the plethora of ... Read More »

Indonesia’s Papua Cover-Up Reflex Prompts Police Dormitory Raid

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Authorities Cite ‘Hidden Activities’ to Cancel Screening of Papuan Film Michelle Winowatan HRW Dozens of Indonesian military and police personnel raided a student dormitory in Surabaya on July 6 to stop the screening of a documentary about security force atrocities in Papua. It’s the latest example of the government’s determination not to deal with past abuses in the country’s easternmost province. Security forces carried out the raid following social media postings about the planned screening of “Bloody Biak.” The film documents the ... Read More »

More than half of WA kids’ calls to helpline were dropped last year

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Questions posed in the WA parliament have revealed over half of the calls made to the Kids Helpline last year were dropped. Hannah Barry WAtoday Greens MP Alison Xamon asked the question of Minister Sue Ellery in parliament in May this year, regarding how much the state government had committed to service provider Yourtown between 2012 and 2017, how many calls were made by WA young people to the helpline and… Ms Xamon received answers during a Legislative Council sitting ... Read More »

Waleed Aly obliterates Malcolm Turnbull in report on so-called African gangs

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The Project‘s Waleed Aly has launched a scathing attack on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, writing off his recent comments about Sudanese gangs as a last-ditch votes grab before Super Saturday byelections next… Genevieve Rota The Age In an eight-minute editorial package written with The Project producer Tom Whitty, Aly on Thursday presented a number of statistics that placed question marks on recent claims by several politicians that violent African gangs were “wreaking havoc” in… “This week the Prime Minister said something interesting,” ... Read More »

What is happening on Nauru should shock the conscience of every Australian

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It is important that we all know the truth of what our government is doing to innocent people Julian Burnside The Guardian In the middle of 2016 Guardian Australia published the Nauru files: more than 2,000 incident reports recording things that had happened in Australia’s refugee gulag on Nauru. The incident reports – made by people directly or indirectly employed by the Australian government – contained reports of assaults, sexual abuse, self-harm and child abuse. They gave an insight into the ... Read More »

Wife’s despair as asylum seeker deported by Australia is arrested in Sri Lanka

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Karthika Gnaneswaran says she and her 10-month-old daughter have been devastated by Thileepan’s removal Ben Doherty The Guardian The wife of deported Tamil asylum seeker Thileepan Gnaneswaran says she is devastated by her husband’s forced removal from Australia and arrest in Sri Lanka, and says her baby daughter faces a future where she might never see her father again. “We are all so depressed; my daughter is very upset, she misses her father,” Karthika Gnaneswaran told the Guardian. “My husband is ... Read More »

Men who murder v men who abuse: Queensland research aims to find the difference

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Researchers will interview Queensland prisoners in the hopes of discovering the difference between men who abuse their intimate female partners versus men who murder them. Lucy Stone Brisbane Times Griffith University professor Paul Mazerolle hopes the project could provide much-needed practical information on the reasons behind the escalation from violence to murder. “A number of years ago we undertook the Australian Homicide Study, so we have an existing data set of 302 people who have murdered somebody, and a subset ... Read More »

Australia deports Tamil asylum seeker, separating him from baby daughter

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Thileepan faces permanent separation from his wife and child, who have been granted safe haven visas Ben Doherty The Guardian A 30-year-old Tamil asylum seeker faces permanent separation from his wife and 10-month-old Australian-born daughter, after being deported more than six years after arriving in Australia. Thileepan (like many Tamils he only uses one name) had been in Australia since arriving by boat in June 2012. He lived in the community for most of his time in Australia, marrying in ... Read More »

Lure of the race card too much for Turnbull to resist

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Malcolm Turnbull won’t mind a bit that he was “embroiled in a race row” on Tuesday There was puzzlement, anger and complaints of “racist dog whistling” on Tuesday after the Prime Minister went on Neil Mitchell’s 3AW program to carry on about “Sudanese gangs” when in the past he has left the… Noel Towell The Age Sure, nobody likes being called a racist, but in the end Turnbull and his senior Victorian MPs will be reflecting on a mission accomplished. ... Read More »

Forcing priests to report abuse not a breach of human rights: Watchirs

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New laws that will force priests to break the seal of confession to report child abuse are not in breach of the ACT’s human right laws, despite concerns about the impact on religious freedoms, the ACT’s Human Rights Commissioner says. Katie Burgess The Canberra Times Under the territory’s expanded reportable conduct scheme, priests in Canberra will be required to report allegations, offences or convictions related to children to the ACT Ombudsman within 30 days from March… But the Australian Catholics Bishops ... Read More »