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Old 12-30-2002, 09:33 PM   #1
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This is just awful! People have been in these detention center for years while they wait to see if they can enter Austrailia! Years! This is a horrid example of how foreigners get treated trying to immigrate to Austrailia! Just terrible!

Third day of arson at Australian camps
Tuesday, December 31, 2002 Posted: 8:33 AM HKT (0033 GMT)



Australia's detention camps have been plagued with riots and fires

Australia's tide of refugees

SYDNEY, Australia (AP) -- Another of Australia's asylum seeker detention centers was hit by an apparent arson attack overnight, the latest in a string of deliberately lit fires in the controversial camps.

The fire at Woomera in central Australia destroyed two accommodation blocks, five toilet blocks and two mess halls on Tuesday, the Department of Immigration said in a statement.

Firefighters said it appeared to have been deliberately lit.

The blaze followed arson attacks by asylum seekers being held at the Port Hedland detention center in Western Australia and at the new Baxter center in South Australia state.

On Monday, a guard at a center in the Western Australia state capital of Perth was injured while trying to quell a riot by about 20 asylum seekers.

The total damage bill from the fires is estimated at $2.2 million (Aust. $4 millon).

Refugee advocate Marion Le said Tuesday the arson attacks were the actions of a small number of desperate refugees -- some of whom have been held in the remote camps for years -- rather than an orchestrated campaign.

Le, from the Independent Council for Refugee Advocacy, added that soaring Southern Hemisphere summer temperatures, which can be over 42 degrees celsius (100 degrees fahrenheit), were also partly to blame.

"It is so hot so tempers fray, as we know just among the rest of us out in the community," she said. "But certainly in that kind of environment, people are on a very, very short leash indeed."

On Monday, rights activists said the Australian government's policy of holding asylum seekers in prison-like detention centers was to blame for the arson.

Some 1,200 illegal immigrants, most from the Middle East and South Asia, are being held in the camps while their applications for asylum are considered or while they wait to be sent home.

In the most serious of the recent fires, nearly 20 rooms were destroyed at the Baxter detention center in South Australia state early Sunday morning when inmates apparently set bedding, furniture and shower curtains alight. No injuries were reported.

Waste of money
"I'm delighted that it's burning and I hope it burns right to the ground," said Jack Smit, a spokesman for refugee group Project SafeCom Inc.

"Baxter is designed as a ... government fortress and as a maximum security prison, and it inflicts permanent damage to the psyche of children as well as adults."

Australia's seven detention centers have been plagued by riots, fires and acts of self-mutilation by inmates, drawing international criticism of the nation's immigration policies.

Australian Attorney General Daryl Williams described the blazes as "an appalling waste of taxpayers money" that also put lives at risk.

"If the people responsible for lighting fires believe this will assist them in coercing the government to let them stay in Australia, they are wrong," he said. "It can only count against them."
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Old 12-30-2002, 09:39 PM   #2
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Posted: Tue, 31 Dec 2002 9:09 AEDT

Howard rejects criticism over detention centres
Prime Minister John Howard rejects criticism from refugee advocates who claim the fires in the nation's detention centres are understandable and Mr Howard believes most Australians support the Government's policy on mandatory detention

Fires in several detention centres over the past week have caused $7 million worth of damage.

The latest fire last night destroyed large sections of the Woomera detention centre in South Australia and it follows a number of fires at the Baxter and Port Hedland facilities.

Mr Howard blames the unrest on people who have lost their case to stay in Australia.

"I don't think there are many people in Australia whatever their politics, who believe people, having gone through a process of review, are deemed not to have what they have asked for, [and] that they are therefore justified in burning the place down," he said.
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Old 12-31-2002, 06:54 AM   #3
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It can only count against them but surely, Mr. PM, it says something about the system? I think its got alot to do with the camps being in the middle of the desert coming up to the hottest time of the year.

And I guess the exorbitant cost of the whole system is swallowed by the government in the belief that its still winning them votes.
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Old 12-31-2002, 06:32 PM   #4
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Wow...Lack of outrage....Must not be stylish if it is not the US!!!!!
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Old 01-02-2003, 03:08 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox
Wow...Lack of outrage....Must not be stylish if it is not the US!!!!!
Nah, it's just lack of time (for me at least) to type a proper reaction. Besides, why the smart-ass remark less than a day later when you post it on a quiet day?

Anyway, it is awful what is happening there. First of all, most won't even get near Australia, as they ferociously guard the seas, using the marine to force any ship that may seem suspicious not to get close to Australia. When refugees do reach Australia, they get locked up as if they are the worst of the worst criminals, locked up for several years as you say, in the middle of the desert.
Now, the other countries' policies aren't that nice either (here in the Netherlands they are quite inconsequent, accomodation also isn't that great and (more importantly) they are slow), but it seems that in Australia they aren't even treated as humans in need.

C ya!

Marty
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Old 01-02-2003, 05:52 AM   #6
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What makes it bad is the government is deliberately scoring major political points off their bullying of these refugees.
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Old 01-02-2003, 06:16 AM   #7
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Originally posted by Popmartijn


Nah, it's just lack of time (for me at least) to type a proper reaction. Besides, why the smart-ass remark less than a day later when you post it on a quiet day?

It was smart-ass, and I am sorry. It just seems that other threads criticizing the US take off much faster!

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Old 01-02-2003, 05:06 PM   #8
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Day 5.....

ZZZZZZZZZZZZ

Silence is deafening.......

Must make anti-US thread to see if anyone is here!!!!
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Old 01-03-2003, 01:01 AM   #9
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Yep, you're right, the US isn't the only country with a shithouse conservative government. And the US isn't the only country with alot of dumbarses who support their shithouse conservative government.

As for the actual issue itself.. were you actually interested in that? Because this isn't an anti-Australia thread, it's a thread that is against a policy of the Australian government. You seem to still not understand the difference.

I welcome anyone to come to this thread and trash the Australian Government. Trash our Prime Minister. Thats not being anti-Australian. Trashing the US Government, trashing the US President is not being anti-American. How hard is it to understand?

And of course threads criticizing the US take off faster. For starters, the majority of this forum are from the US. Plus, what are the 'Top Ten Major International Issues' at the moment? How many of them at the moment depend almost entirely on what the US decides to do? And how many other countries will be effected by it?
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Old 01-03-2003, 07:00 AM   #10
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Originally posted by TylerDurden
Yep, you're right, the US isn't the only country with a shithouse conservative government. And the US isn't the only country with alot of dumbarses who support their shithouse conservative government.
Oh now that really hurts.....Name-calling always makes me feel badly. It really diminishes the excellent point you attempt to make way down at the bottom of this post.

Quote:
Originally posted by TylerDurden
As for the actual issue itself.. were you actually interested in that? Because this isn't an anti-Australia thread, it's a thread that is against a policy of the Australian government. You seem to still not understand the difference. [/B]
I was being SARCASTIC. Quite a few people have been up in arms over US Immigration policies. For some reason there has been limited posting about this immigration issue. As for my failure to understand, "still", for so many people to be concerned about human rights, and not respond speaks volumes to me, It shows how fashionable it is to constantly point the finger at the US. In other words, in my opinion, there are many who profess to care about human rights, but only when it is to criticize the US.

Or that could be an assumption on my part. Maybe they do not feel comfortable speaking on an issue that they do not have access to a lot of information.

Quote:
Originally posted by TylerDurden
I welcome anyone to come to this thread and trash the Australian Government. Trash our Prime Minister. Thats not being anti-Australian. Trashing the US Government, trashing the US President is not being anti-American. How hard is it to understand?[/B]
Hmmm..I will again say....I was being SARCASTIC. Anyone who has read my posts, has seen me say it is AMERICAN to criticize our governement. Excercising our 1st Amendment Rights is important, and I have been consistent in my believe that saying somehting the oppossite of the "status quo" is a good thing. My Anti-US Comment was made to emphasize the inconsistencies of this board. HOW HARD IS IT TO UNDERSTAND?

Quote:
Originally posted by TylerDurden
And of course threads criticizing the US take off faster. For starters, the majority of this forum are from the US. Plus, what are the 'Top Ten Major International Issues' at the moment? How many of them at the moment depend almost entirely on what the US decides to do? And how many other countries will be effected by it? [/B]
Ah a valid point. Could be true except this has now been posted for five days. I would by it if you had made this statement earlier in the week.

You did a very good job name-calling in the beginning of your post, implying I am an imbicile by "STILL" not understanding (as if you had responded to me personally in this thread somewhere else) in the middle, valid point that is three days late in the end.

The fact is these people have been kept there for years in these detention centers. They can't immigrate in, and due to political reasons in their homeland they can't go home. Yes, I took the time to research it as best I could since there have been no posts discussing the issue. It is a shame, and now that I have read about the issue I question why they can' immigrate to another country, rather than be held in detention centers....

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Old 01-03-2003, 08:48 AM   #11
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I think Australia treats immigrants way too harsh
I think The Netherlands doesn't treat immigrants well enough
there, I hope you feel better now

the reason this thread doesn't take off is because there really aren't many Aussies here who proclaim that the way immigrants are treated there is the right way to do things
you expect 35 posts by people agreeing with eachother?
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Old 01-03-2003, 11:31 AM   #12
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I feel fine!

I disagree with your reasoning.

There are plenty of people who agree in other threads and they post.

I am NOT surprised in the least at the lack of response to this thread.

PEACE
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Old 01-03-2003, 03:59 PM   #13
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I am not surprised that you are not surprised
I also like to think I'm right all of the time
so you have my sympathies
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Old 01-03-2003, 04:49 PM   #14
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There seems to be many who always think of terms of:

us vs. them

It this really correct?

or is there only: us
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Old 01-03-2003, 06:14 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Salome
I am not surprised that you are not surprised
I also like to think I'm right all of the time
so you have my sympathies
LOL It is an awesome character trait isn't it
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