Migration

Spanish fireman faces 20 years in prison for rescuing migrants at sea

Italian authorities have accused Miguel Roldán of aiding human traffickers after he helped save thousands of people from drowning in the Mediterranean. NACHO SÁNCHEZ El Pais English version by Asia London Palomba. It is June 2017, and firefighter Miguel Roldán has been working for 18 hours on a migrant rescue ship in the Mediterranean Sea. A phone call warns him that another migrant boat is sinking. It is past 10pm and completely dark. He sets out with two of his ... Read More »

Trump Threatens to Blow Up the U.S. Economy

The same dynamics that preceded Trump’s decision to cut off aid to Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala are now playing out with his threats to shut down the Mexican border. It all starts on Twitter. Nancy LeTourneau Washington Monthly According to CNN, some members of his administration are warning him that such a move would result in catastrophic consequences, while others are cheering him on. Stephen Miller—more than likely in the latter group—suggests that the president is not bluffing. In ... Read More »

The Invisible Man

Introduced by writer Anna Funder The extraordinary story of Behrouz Boochani, the man who won Australia’s richest literary award but remains unable to set foot in this country. ABC Australian Story The stateless refugee, who’s in detention on Manus Island, smuggled out his entire book text by text on a smuggled mobile phone. In January, No Friend But the Mountains won the $100,000 Victorian Prize for Literature, Born during the Iran-Iraq war and suffering persecution as a Kurd in his ... Read More »

Jessie Simmons: How a schoolteacher became an unsung hero of the civil rights movement

Jessie Dean Gipson Simmons was full of optimism when she and her family moved from an apartment in a troubled area of Detroit to a new development in Inkster, Michigan in 1955. Valerie Hill-Jackson The Conversation With three children in tow, Jessie and her husband settled into a home on Colgate Street in a neighborhood known as “Brick City” – an idyllic enclave of single, working-class families with a shared community garden. The plan was simple. Like many African Americans ... Read More »

Confronting racism is not about the needs and feelings of white people

Too often whites at discussions on race decide for themselves what will be discussed, what they will hear, what they will learn. And it is their space. All spaces are Ijeoma Oluo The Guardian I was leaving a corporate office building after a full day of leading workshops on how to talk about race thoughtfully and deliberately. The audience for each session had been similar to the dozens I had faced before. There was an overrepresentation of employees of color, ... Read More »

How to challenge racism by listening to those who experience it

The terrorist attack in Christchurch was an expression of racist hatred that is being disseminated systematically across the globe by some media, think tanks and grassroots groups. Mohan Jyoti Dutta The Conversation To actively challenge and dismantle racism, we need to create communication platforms for people who experience it. At the Center for Culture-centered Approach to Research and Evaluation (CARE), we have developed an activist-in-residence programme as a… This month, Māori activist Tame Iti completed his residency. Global network of ... Read More »

Canada takes refugee who helped shelter Snowden in Hong Kong

Toronto: A Filipino woman who helped shelter former NSA contractor Edward Snowden when he fled to Hong Kong has been granted refugee status in Canada. Brisbane Times AP Vanessa Rodel and her daughter Keana arrived in Toronto on Monday evening. “I feel so great and I feel like I’m free,” she said. Lawyer Robert Tibbo represented Rodel as she sought asylum in Hong Kong in 2013 due to an alleged kidnap and rape by militants in her homeland. The attorney asked ... Read More »

95-year-old caught four buses to join rally against racism

Ninety-five-year old John Sato caught four buses to join the march against racism in central Auckland at the weekend. Our reporter Chen Liu spoke to him. Radio New Zealand John Sato (C) 95, one of only two Japanese servicemen in the New Zealand army in WWII, took multiple buses from Howick to join the march against racism at Aotea Square. 95-year-old… Read More »

Australia’s racist image and the communities of faith

Australia has been known around the world for many years now as the rich, empty, selfish country that turns away boatloads of asylum seekers, pays people smugglers to take their human cargo elsewhere, incarcerates children and enacts other appalling human rights abuses. Alan Austin Independent Australia How has it come to this? Australia is now being reported widely as the country that produced the monster who perpetrated one of the world’s deadliest attacks targeting a religious group and an elected senator who ... Read More »

New ABC chairman has history calling out ‘problems’ with multiculturalism

“There are problems with multiculturalism and it’s about time our politicians had the guts to mention some of them,”  wrote Ita Buttrose in 1988 when she was editor-in-chief of the Sun-Herald. Jennifer Duke The Age In the column, Buttrose talks about two-thirds of voters wanting a reduction in immigration levels, Australians fearing “Asianisation” and her hopes for a referendum on immigration. “I don’t object to specific groups of people, linked to their country of birth, congregating in a specific area, but ... Read More »

Secret recordings allege excessive force by guards in Australia’s detention centres

Leaked video and audio reveals tension as onshore detention centres become more like prisons and increasingly house people awaiting deportation Helen Davidson The Guardian Leaked video, audio and images have revealed allegations of excessive force and harassment inside Australia’s network of onshore detention centres. Last year the federal court overruled a ban on detainees having phones, which has allowed snippets of life inside the centres – long closed to media and cloaked in secrecy – to be recorded and leaked out. ... Read More »

World’s tallest building lit up with image of Jacinda Ardern

The world’s tallest building has been lit up with a giant image of New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern embracing a woman at the Kilbirnie mosque in Wellington. Joel MacManus The Sydney Morning Herald The Burj Khalifa, an 829-metre-tall skyscraper in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, beamed out a photo taken by Wellington photographer Hagen Hopkins, as well as the Arabic word “salam” and its English translation, “peace”. Sheik Mohammed, the prime minister and vice-president of the UAE, and ruler of ... Read More »

Eminent Byzantinist Dr. Speros Vryonis, Jr., Supporter of Armenian Studies, Dies

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Eminent Byzantinist and historian Dr. Speros Vryonis, Jr. passed away on March 11 peacefully in his sleep at the age of 90. Aram Arkun The Armenian Mirror-Spectator Vryonis wrote extensively on Byzantine, Balkan and Greek history. Secondarily, he contributed to the advancement of Armenology through his research in Byzantine history, his unwavering stand against shoddy scholarship and… Incongruously, or at least unexpectedly, combining a Southern twang and courtesy with ancient Greek aphorisms, Vryonis was witty and gregarious. ... Read More »

Harmony in Australia Means Stop Racist Dog-Whistling

Long History of Politicians Stoking Fears Over Refugees Elaine Pearson HRW Today is the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, known in Australia as Harmony Day. It’s especially relevant given last Friday’s attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, where an Australian right-wing extremist gunned down at least 50 people and wounded dozens more in two mosques. The attacker livestreamed the shootings and… New Zealand’s prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, has shown leadership with compassion and… Harmony in Australia… Read More »

“Dear Prime Minister …”: An Open Letter to Jacinda Ardern

Dear Prime Minister Ardern, I am a 13-year-old Muslim girl from Australia and I would like to publicly share my appreciation with you. Summer Joyan ABC I belong to the generation that was born after 11 September 2001. I have never really contemplated how dark the anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant language is that permeates Australian society, because it is all I have ever known. I guess I’ve become used to hearing political leaders use that same language. But then, after seeing ... Read More »

Diaspora Politics: Turkey’s New Balkan Ambassadors

More and more Turks are ‘coming home’ to the Balkans. As a new diaspora community takes root, will it transplant the values of Erdogan’s ‘new Turkey’? Hamdi Firat Buyuk, Alexander Clapp and Serbeze Haxhiaj BalkanInsight A few steps from the wooden Ottoman fountain that looms over Bascarsija square in central Sarajevo, shoppers in a Turkish grocery store browse tea, spices and Turkish delight. Murat Ozkaya, the store’s owner, considers himself a trailblazer. The former stockbroker from the eastern Turkish city ... Read More »