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Petition Tag - refugees
Parliament's Home Affairs Select Committee are about to hold an Inquiry in to Asylum - covering all aspects of the UK system from screening, detention, Fast Track, destitution, media reporting, women and the vulnerable, and outcomes of the system.
This Inquiry follows the committee of MP's damning report on the thoroughly discredited UKBA, which is now being shut down, as Movement for Justice had called for. Submissions to the Inquiry describe deaths and brutal deportations of asylum seekers like Jackie Nanyonjo, detention of the elderly, ill and pregnant and vulnerable, indefinite detention and destitution.
Hearing the direct, open live testimony of the experience of all aspects of the asylum system from those who experience it is essential, as the key prerequisite of the Inquiry to fully comprehend the system as it is, and to fix the broken system that exists. Our petition and action is crucial so that change is not merely cosmetic, and Britain live up to its promise of sanctuary, safety and equality.
After over a year and a half, not a single person has been held accountable for the catastrophic accident that happened at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in March 2011.
The report of the independent investigation commission set up by the Japanese Diet published in July 2012 unequivocally states that the accident was man-made; TEPCO did not take appropriate measures against the potential risks of tsunami already identified; and the collusion of the government oversight agencies with the nuclear power industry compromised safety. [for the report, go to
In June 2012, a group of over 1,300 people who lived in Fukushima at that time filed criminal charges against 33 individuals, which include former TEPCO executives, government officials in charge of nuclear safety in Japan, and the current Radiation Health Risk Management Adviser appointed by Fukushima Prefecture. The charges were filed with the Fukushima District Prosecutor's Office on the grounds of professional negligence resulting in death and injury, and environmental pollution offense.
The written statements submitted by each plaintiff tell stories of agony of how their daily lives were suddenly uprooted and their human rights violated. No government assistance has been provided for the evacuation of children, and most have been left in dangerously contaminated areas in Fukushima. The impact of radiation exposure on their health is becoming more evident, while the government continues to deny this grim reality.
The second group of an additional 10,000 plaintiffs from the rest of Japan are expected to join this case on November 15, 2012. Now we need to put pressure on the Fukushima District Prosecutor's Office, so that it will not just go through motions, but conduct a thorough investigation that would result in the actual prosecution of the individuals charged. This is only the first step, and a critical one.
Since 1988 thousands of men, women and children have perished in the Mediterranean attempting the so-called ‘voyage of hope’ to Europe. Tens of billions of euros are spent every year to control our borders and immigration processing.
In Europe, we should have a better expenditure management and better respect for human rights.
Ask the European Parliament to reform laws on immigration and a more humane management of migration flows by creating a European Organization for Management of the Immigration and Asylum Requests.
The Immigration Department has moved to place new unjustified and arbitrary restrictions on visiting asylum seekers at the residential housing compound of Villawood detention centre.
A number of individuals, including Senator Lee Rhiannon and Refugee Action Coalition's Ian Rintoul, have been barred from visiting or had their visits cut short in recent weeks in a blatant effort to exclude people who are known critics of detention conditions.
The Department is now demanding that 24 hours notice be given of any visit to the Villawood housing compound. This would make it harder to access Villawood and drastically reduce the number of visits to asylum seekers.
Visiting arrangements have also been changed to allow a visitor to only speak to the person named on their visiting form, creating an intolerable and impractical situation that prevents people socially interacting or even having conversations with people they know.
These newly imposed arrangements are an attack on the rights of refugees and visitors alike; creating a distressing situation for refugees, some of whom have been in detention for three years.
These decisions are being made by senior people in the Immigration Department, such as Director of Detentions Operations, Steve Karras, with the knowledge of Minister Chris Bowen.
This petition of the undersigned citizens and residents of Australia
Draws to the attention of the House:
(i) that the security situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated and that the Afghan government cannot provide safety for asylum seekers returned to any area of Afghanistan, including Kabul;
(ii) that according to a UN report there are “credible allegations and evidence” that the Sri Lanka military, headed by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, committed war crimes, and that thousands of Tamils remain in government controlled internment camps;
(iii) that the Australian government cannot guarantee the human rights or the safety of asylum seekers deported to those countries.
Aaron Ara was denied refuge for the second time in June 2o11. He is one of nearly 75o Palestinian refugees whose asylum applications have been rejected by Norwegian authorities during the last two years. Previously, nearly all Palestinian refugees were granted residence in Norway, but in 2009 this changed dramatically.
For the first time in history, Norwegian authorities changed the terms of immigration targeting a specific group of refugees whose homeland situation had not changed. In addition, the current policy clearly opposes the recommendations of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
Norwegian authorities presently consider Palestinian territories to be safe enough for refugees to return. Simultaneously a number of factors indicate the opposite. First, Palestinian refugees have their own memories and experiences that can easily be backed up by witness descriptions, mainstream news media and general knowledge about the area.
Second, Norwegian authorities discourage Norwegians to travel to these areas (http://www.norway.org.ps/Norsk/Reiserad/). Third, international human rights organizations criticize Palestinian authorities for disregarding human rights.
On Tuesday, 12 July, 2011, approximately 35 police officers and other Cypriot authorities violently assaulted a group of Iranian and other refugees held in Larnaca detention center for migration-related issues (e.g., expired visa).
During the attack, the Cypriot authorities threatened the refugees with handguns. They used batons and brass knuckles to brutally beat the refugees, including an elderly 72-year old asylum-seeker, who was transferred to solitary confinement after the beatings. He, along with his family, was deported to Iran in the following days. One asylum-seeker who reported a broken leg first received medical treatment 10 days after the attacks.
Neither the government of Cyprus nor the UNHCR has taken any substantive action with regard to these illegal attacks on defenseless detainees held for migration-related reasons, leaving it to an "investigation" to determine what happened, while detained refugees remain at the mercy of those who beat them.
Meanwhile, the Cypriot government, which flagrantly violates fundamental human rights, expects to assume the Presidency of the European Union in 2012.
More about the case can be read here, including a signed complaint by some of the affected asylum-seekers.
Video clip of the injuries sustained by 2 of the detained asylum-seekers can be seen here (English translation appears below the video clips on youtube):
VIDEO 1 and VIDEO 2.
Free Edson Cosmas – Gay Tanzanian Activist standing for freedom and justice - detained in UK detention centre.
Stop deporting gay activists to persecution and death.
Amnesty now for all immigrants – no more second class citizenship.
Edson is a prominent, openly gay activist, member of Movement for Justice, and a leader fighting to bring forward the rights and equality of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and achieve greater equality.
Edson came to the UK as a student to be able to develop himself in a country where for the first time he could really be himself. He was known to be gay in Tanzania, where homosexuality is illegal and carries prison sentences of 25 years, and gay and lesbian activists are targeted for arrest. He has been attacked, beaten and denounced in Tanzania because of his sexuality – a typical experience for LGBTI people who are ‘out’. But in the UK instead of safety LGBTI people find detention, fast-track and the threat of deportation into even greater danger.
Edson Cosmas is not safe in Tanzania – Free Edson now!
Additional: If you have information, contacts or experience about LGBTI refugees from Tanzania please message us with your contact details.
Throughout 2011 much of the Middle East has been engulfed by political turmoil and unrest; Egypt, Yemen, Libya and Syria. Much of this upheaval has received coverage to the point of saturation by the western media. Furthermore, throughout this time the US State Department, and the governments of most other western nations have supported democratic reforms and regime change. One exception has been the Kingdom of Bahrain. Very has little been shown and very little has been said. One exception was the excellent coverage provided by SBS' Dateline program, with journalist Yarra Bou Melhem. This program, entitled Bahrain's Dark Secret aired on Sunday 3 April, 2011. Sadly, this has been one of the very few programs in Australia to expose the horrendous violation of human rights issues in Bahrain. While protesters are no longer taking to the streets, the political regime which supports King Hamed ibn Isa Khalifa continues to intimidate and harass people in their hundreds and thousands.
The great sadness in all of this is the silence of the western powers who have been deafening in their condemnation of Gadafi, Assad, Moubarak etc.
Why does the United States (in particular) remain silent despite the ongoing and increasing atrocities being committed in Bahrain? Surely the convenience of having its Navy's 5th Fleet based there hasn't bought its silence?
While quickly and rightfully condemning the human rights violations and abuses in Libya, Syria and other parts of the Middle East, the United States has remained disturbingly silent throughout the last two months as Bahrain's regime has actively engaged in the suppression and persecution of the Shiite majority.
In response to protests calling for democratic reforms people have been gassed, shot and attacked in the streets; summarily dismissed from their workplaces (by the hundreds) arbitrarily placed under curfew and house arrest subject to ongoing harassment and intimidation.
Security forces have arrested, detained and tortured hundreds of people. The whereabouts of most are unknown. Even hospitals have become a target for the attacking of political opponents, and innocent bystanders and the medical staff who seek to treat them.
Although condemned by Human Rights groups around the world the response of the United States and other western nations has been ... silence. When the demonstrations first broke there were one or two 'voices of concern but these have been very quickly muted.
The moral high ground is quickly lost when one acts out of vested interest rather than a concern for the common good. The credibility of the United States and other western nations, especially in the Middle East, would be raised immeasurably if they acted consistently out of common interest, not self interest.
The Kingdom of Bahrain must be held to account! Its security forces threaten the lives of ordinary citizens, innocent civilians. People who have lived and worked in Bahrain all of their lives, and who have contributed to the social and economic capital of the country are suddenly being persecuted because they are Shiite Muslim and are considered to be a threat. No area of society has been tainted by the regime ... engineers, teachers, doctors have all lost their jobs. Even Bahrain's national soccer team has been purged. Men have gone from national heroes to national villains.
The real villains are those who seek to use religious differences as a means of justifying prejudice and hatred. These are the criminals who are changing Bahrain from a socially cohesive nation to one of sectarian division and violence. This regime must be held to account and the western nations, most especially the United States, and the media of free and democratic nations cannot remain silent.
NHS Newham and LBN propose to close down the Migrant Advice and Advocacy Project on which hundreds of vulnerable refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers rely every year to maintain their most basic rights.
The project which employs two workers has made a real difference to people suffering extreme exploitation or deprivation -- working with many people in mental health difficulties.
ZANU PF is a party that for the last 30 years has thrived from suffocating other political opponents who do not support the party. Zimbabweans have been killed and died at the hands of ZANU PF supporters and militias because of supporting or belonging to other political parties other than ZANU PF.
According to Israeli police, 1200 Palestinian children have been arrested, interrogated and imprisoned in the occupied city of Jerusalem alone this year. The youngest of these children was seven-years old.
Children and teen-agers were often dragged out of their beds in the middle of the night, taken in handcuffs for questioning, threatened, humiliated and many were subjected to physical violence while under arrest as part of an ongoing campaign against the children of Palestine. Since the year 2000, more than 8000 have been arrested by Israel, and reports of mistreatment are commonplace.
Further, based on sworn affidavits collected in 2009 from 100 of these children, lawyers working in the occupied West Bank with Defense Children International, a Geneva-based non governmental organization, found that 69% were beaten and kicked, 49% were threatened, 14% were held in solitary confinement, 12% were threatened with sexual assault, including rape, and 32% were forced to sign confessions written in Hebrew, a language they do not understand.
Minors were often asked to give names and incriminate friends and relatives as a condition of their release. Such institutionalized and systematic mistreatment of Palestinian children by the state of Israel is a violation international law and specifically contravenes the Convention on the Rights of the Child to which Israel is supposedly a signatory.
Please help mother Z and daughter K, who arrived in the UK in 2007 on K's stepfather's visa. At the time daughter K was a child, only 15 years old, and from the time they arrived, her stepfather subjected her to severe psychological as well as physical abuse. He drank and gambled excessively and even at one point tried to SELL his daughter, prepared to have her raped for money! Some of the abuse this poor mother and daughter suffered is too graphic to explain here and we need to keep their names anonymous as it is too dangerous to them to reveal them.
The stepfather eventually left the country in September 2010 after being thrown out of University. Unfortunately this has left K and Z in the vulnerable position of having to apply for refugee status, and K's stepfather has told both her and her mother that he will ensure they are murdered should they be forced to return home.
Not surprisingly, K in particular is extremely traumatised because of her experiences, and the UKBA is threatening to force both mother and daughter to be deported on 1ST DECEMBER 2010. This is totally unacceptable, as they should both be give safe haven in the UK as they fully meet the criteria for being refugees:
1. They have been abused and persecuted by someone who is now in the country they are being threatened to be deported to and there is evidence and proof of this, for example police records and witnesses.
2. This person has theatened to kill both of them as an 'honour killing' (because they are telling the truth about his vile abusive behaviour) and they can NOT return to their home country as they will not be safe there.
This country is not Iran, it is Mongolia, but we ask you from the bottom of our hearts to sign this petition. We need to show the UK and its Border Agency that this young girl and her mother can NOT be forced to return to a country where their abuser will be able to find and murder them. In addition, both these victims should be able to live safely in a country which claims to uphold human rights, and receive the counselling they so badly need after being subject to such severe abuse.
Please help - this case is urgent because of the time scale involved - and circulate as widely as you can.
Dr Gill Gillespie
Walton K Martin III
Directors of Iranian Refugees Action Network
Iran Information Project
Norway has denied asylum to Iranians Hushang Parsa and Hamid Gorbani, who identify with the anti-government Green Movement and who fear for their lives if they should be returned to Iran.
The Islamic Republic brutally represses peaceful protesters, journalists, students, and human rights activists within its borders:
Neda Agha Soltan was shot dead in the street, simply for walking among peaceful protesters in June 2009. Mohammad Valian, a 20-year old boy whose only “crime” was calling for freedom and throwing a rock, was sentenced to death. Thousands have been arrested after the 2009 protests. Hundreds of people have been executed.
Under these circumstances, any effort by Norway to forcibly return Hushang Parsa and Hamid Gorbani clearly and egregiously violates of the principle of non-refoulement: “no refugee should be returned in any manner whatsoever to any country where he or she would be at risk of persecution.” Norway has signed the Convention and Protocol on the Status of Refugees, where this principle is enshrined.
Hushang Parsa and Hamid Gorbani warrant refugee status and protection under UN conventions. Norway must recognize the implications of its act in these two cases: violating the principle of non-refoulement will have dire consequences for refugees worldwide, especially for thousands of Iranian refugees surviving precariously in Turkey, Greece and Iraq.
The world does not want these countries to follow a poor example set by Norway.
Please see the following letter-writing campaign for an action that will have immediate impact!
Rahman Nazary is 23 years old. He came to the UK in September 2005 when he was 18, in the back of a lorry, after fearing for his life and needing to escape from the Iranian regime. His asylum application was refused in November 2005 and became a Christian in 2007, something for which he would be persecuted for if he was to be forcibly deported back to Iran.
Instead of offering Rahman safety, the UKBA have turned down all his appeals so far. He says:
"I feel like it could be heaven for me here, but they have made it hell. I see people who have a good life and enjoy their freedom, but because I'm an asylum seeker I'm not a part of society."
Rahman has been on hunger strike twice, firstly in 2007, to protest against his treatment. Then, he was sectioned under the Mental Health Act after refusing food! His story can be seen here:
In 2010, desperate to hear the result of his latest appeal, submitted in April, he again went on hunger strike and after 7 days was admitted to hospital only to hear that this appeal had been turned down.
It is time for the UKBA to admit that it is totally unacceptable for Iranian refugees to be returned to Iran, as they inevitably face imprisonment, torture, lashing and persecution as a result of being a member of a vulnerable group such as converted Christians. Please sign the petition demanding that Rahman be able to stay in the UK and afforded the human rights he deserves.
In 1985, the Supreme Court ruled that under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Canada cannot deport a refugee until he or she has had a hearing.
As such, anyone who wants to stay in Canada indefinitely simply has to skip their hearings repeatedly.
The Sun outlined the loophole in a 2003 series on national security.
The Montreal-based Algerian man who attempted to blow up Los Angeles airport was a prime example of a refugee who knew that he simply had to skip his deportation hearing repeatedly, and he’d never have to leave.
"The Charter also affords refugee claimants access to Canada’s social safety network, even if they should’ve been deported years earlier."
And of the 60,000 refugee claimants in Canada, more than half — about 38,000 — are considered “whereabouts unknown.” That’s a nice way of saying they won’t be showing up for their hearing, whether it takes the government 60 days to stage it, as the new law proposes, or four years.
That breeds a generation of poverty which in turn leads to diaspora-based crime, which in turn leads some to blame refugees for Canada’s street violence, when they’re a small part of the problem. On top of that, of those who do apply legitimately, as many as 75% each year are accepted as being refugees.
Do you think it's time to end the "wet foot, dry foot" policy, in terms of allowing Cuban refugees a free pass into the USA?
Cuban immigrants who illegally migrate to the U.S. are allowed to stay once they set foot on American soil.
With the “wet foot, dry foot” policy, Cubans who make it to shore can stay becoming eligible for permanent residence under the Cuban Adjustment Act.
This law shows favoritism toward a certain group of people (Cubans). Which is not fair for people who legally apply for asylum from their own countries. The Cuban excuse is always that Fidel Castro is after them. If that's the case then all countries should have the option to "get away" from whomever is after them.
I doubt that Fidel Castro would come after all those people who illegally migrate. They are taking advantage of the benefit they have to just touch soil without having to file the legal paper work and wait years for residency.
How is that fair to the rest of the world? It is not fair and we need to stop the preferential treatment of Cuban refugees.
During 2009 at least 55 boatloads of asylum seekers have been detected off the north west coast of Western Australia.
These vessels from Indonesia are exploiting the generous immigration rules enacted by the Australian Government by charging between $10,000 - $15,000 per person for the trip to Australian waters and then calling for help declaring an emergency at sea requiring assistance from Australian vessels in the region and then demanding to be given asylum in Australia.
Majority of asylum seekers arriving in Malta are in demand for Humanitarian protection, “an immigration status which can be given to anyone who, whilst not recognised as a refugee, would in his or her own country, be at serious risk of facing the death penalty, unlawful killing or torture, or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment”.
Frequent reasons for those asylum seeker to escape from their country to Europe is the hunger and extreme poverty. MSF observed that in Lyster Barracks, Hal Far (Maltese detention center), food is “distributed three times a day but does not include sufficient vegetables and fruit required for a healthy diet. In addition there is no special food available for children and babies. Special diets for medical Reasons (e.g. for patients with diabetes) are not always correctly provided”.
The detention centres should provide an access to the basic right to food and health as stipulated in the EC Directive laying down minimum standards for the reception of asylum seekers, Maltese Prison Regulations and UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners which mention that “The medical officer shall regularly inspect and advise the director upon: The quantity, quality, preparation and service of food, the hygiene and cleanliness of the institution and the prisoners the sanitation, heating, lighting and ventilation of the institution”.
We are asking today to the Maltese Department of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention to take actions and appoint a board of health professionals to monitor the food distribution and to evaluate the living conditions in the detention centres and ensure that there is no negative impact on the residents’ health.
This petition calls on the citizens of various governments of the world and their political leaders to raise awareness and educate themselves concerning the ongoing destructive and devastating war going on in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and to make its resolution and end a major political priority in the coming days, weeks and months.
A "refugee" is not the same as just an immigrant. The term "refugee" is referred to a person who owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion, is outside the country of their nationality, and is unable to, or owing to such a fear, is unwilling to avoid himself/herself of the protection of that country (1951, UN Convention Relating to the status of Refugees).
Haitian refugees in the United States have long been labeled as immigrants because Haiti is a poor country and most Haitians are poor. Haitians have been denied asylum in much greater numbers than people from other nations. In reality, many Haitian asylum seekers are fleeing conditions that should ensure approval of asylum for them.
U.S. immigration policy treats Haitian migrants so differently from Cubans. Cubans are immediately granted asylum if they reach American soil, while Haitians are sent to the krome Detention Center to await hearings that could take months...and get deported.
Racism and economics are the true reasons for this unequal treatment. Haitians are mostly black and poor, and many of them are illiterate. Cubans are mostly white in appearance, many of them are rich or have connections with the rich.
U.S. detentions and interdiction policies toward Haitians are harsh and unfair. As Christian activists, we cannot tolerate a policy that favors a group of refugees over another based on color and economic status.
We are demanding equal treatment for all refugees. We want a humane policy for all refugees: rich and poor, black and white, Cubans and Haitians. All refugees deserve to be treated with dignity.
Fleurise Davis, LL.M.
L.I.F.E. Rights International
The Australian Government will not be accepting anymore African refugees until
July 2008. As stated by the United Nations High Commission for refugees,
Australia should be accepting refugees based on need for protection, not on
their ability to intergrate (or perceptions about their intergration) nor on the basis of religion, race or nationality.
Australia’s cut is working against our duty to demonstrate empathy, good will and patience. It is also contradicting the Human Rights Declaration which states that every person has a right to life, liberty and security. Africa needs our help - millions of people are stuck in refugee camps and our government is about to turn them away.
This petition is not just fighting for the rights of African refugees and the greater refugee community, but also fighting against the racial politics of our government. As worldly citizens we need to stand up for our people.
Nigerian local election observers and the international election observers and the president of Nigeria agreed that the last April election in Nigeria was massively rigged.
Like the majority of the Australian public you may or may not be aware that there is a sovereign Polynesian island nation located in the Pacific Ocean called Tuvalu. You may also be unaware that due to the adverse effects of global warming that our country (the single biggest emitter of greenhouses gasses), along with other industrialized states has created, Tuvalu is soon to be our first victim.
Tuvalu is but only nine atolls rising to no more than around 4 metres above sea level and as scientists predict, in less than 50 years the entire nation will be underwater. Tuvalu’s 12,000 inhabitants live off their land, fishing and farming to sustain their way of life. Soon they will find themselves stuck in an untenable situation where at first their daily life will be gravely affected until their entire way of life has been destroyed.
The growing fear of Tuvalu sinking prompted the island to begin to try and strike a deal where its people could slowly migrate to New Zealand and Australia as Environmental Refugees, before the threat robbed them of their lives. New Zealand agreed to begin a 30 year migration program but Australia promptly and flatly denied their request. Then time Australian Attorney General Phillip Ruddock stated, 'Why would I agree with that? I think it is on a 30, 40 or 50-year horizon, if it's going to occur at all.'
Ruddock based his stance on the belief that the evidence he had obtained from the National Tide Facility based at Flinders University that showed no rise in average tide levels since its record keeping began in 1993. What is not known by the average Australian is that this information has been manipulated and is based on a loophole, when looked at deeper; the NTF’s findings are being used for their face value rather than their actual relevance to Tuvalu’s crisis.
Tuvalu’s highest tides continue to grow higher and their lowest lower so therefore there is obviously no change in the NTF’s ‘average’. A much less publicised tide gauge on Tuvalu (and one never mentioned by Mr Ruddock) run by the University of Hawaii’s Sea Centre, covering a much longer period (1976 – 2006) shows a substantial (2.2cm) yearly rise in Tuvalu’s average tide. Mr Ruddock would like us all to believe that the people of Tuvalu are simply lying about their situation.
The problem lies in Tuvalu’s absolute lack of natural resources; therefore there is no benefit to our government taking a vested interest in liberating them from this threat of real global terrorism. With no real economic power it seems there is no real need for our government to help these people. Australia still lets in the one of the lowest amounts of immigrants per capita in the entire world and to add injury to insult, Mr Ruddock requested that Tuvalu find room on its 10 square miles to take in boat people who weren’t allowed into Australia!
You may be shocked that this could go on and still be almost unheard of amongst our public and not represented by our media. Unfortunately the time has come to realise that the majority of our media does hold the journalistic credibility we’d like to believe and our government wants us to behave and think in a way that does not compromise their financial ambitions.
Now a new government has taken power, and with that government comes all the promises of change and social responsibility they have promised to the Australian people. One issue that was never brought up was that of Tuvalu and their situation.
Our new Attorney General Robert McClelland has said little to nothing about Tuvalu in the past. As a member of the opposition in 2007, he stated that
"Even if the sea were to rise less than the predicted 14-32cm in the Pacific by 2050, there would still be devastating results for Pacific islands. The worst case scenario is total inundation. That is a real prospect faced by Tuvalu..."
Now the Rudd government has come into power and we the people must make them accountable for their promise to be a more compassionate and responsible one then their predecessors. If nothing is done, by us, the real people of Australia for them, the real people of Tuvalu, then they will die and there culture will disappear as if it never existed.
We don’t want your money, all we want is for you to use your voice to strengthen theirs and sign this petition so that we can use our democracy for good and make the government do the will of its people.
رونوشت به :
دبیر کل سازمان ملل متحد آقای کوفی انان
دفتر کمیساریای عالی پناهندگان سازمان ملل -ژنو
دفتر کمیساریای عالی پناهندگان سازمان ملل
دفتر کمیساریای عالی پناهندگان سازمان ملل
دفتر حقوق بشر سازمان ملل متحد
1200 پناهنده کرد ایرانی (موسوم به شمال عراقی ) که در طول سالهای 2001 تا 2003 میلادی از شمال عراق به ترکیه آمده اند نیاز به توجه و اقدامات سریع دارند !
این گروه از فعالین سیاسی مخالف استبداد جمهوری اسلامی ایران بوده و سالها عمیه ظلم و دیکتاتوری آن رژیم مبارزه کرده اند. آنها به علت فشار و تهدید نیروهای سرکوبگر حکومت اسلامی مجبور به ترک میهن پناه گرفتن در مناطق شماللی عراق شده بودند
با شروع جنگ خلیج و ایجاد خلاء حکومتی در مناطق شمالی عراق نفوذ شبکه های جاسوسی و تروریستی جمهوری اسلامی در این نواحی افزایش یافت تا جایی که به ترور و ربودن مخالفان پناهگرفته خود در این مناطق پرداختند و حتی دهها نفر از پناهندگان تحت حمایت (UNHCR) در عراق را نیز ربوده یا ترور کردند
با این وصف و با وجود توقف فعالیتهای دفتر UNHCR در عراق این گروه جهت نجات جان خود و خانواده هایشان به ترکیه آمدند و خود را به دفتر کمیساریای عالی پناهندگان سازمان ملل معرفی کردند.
بعد از مدت زیادی تاخیر در اوایل سال 2004 از طرف UNHCR برگه ای دال بر قبولی درخواست پناهندگی شان دریافت داشته اند از آن تاریخ تابحال که یکسال و نیم می گذرد این گروه پناهنده سازمان ملل متحد هنوز در وضعیتی نابسامان در انتظار طی شدن دیگر مراحل مربوط به کیس پناهندگی شان هستند که متاسفانه با بی توجهی UNHCR جهت حل مشکلاتشان روبرو بوده و هستند.
لذا با توجه به وضعیت نامشخص و بلاتکلیف موجود مسئولین کمیساریای عامی پناهندگان سازمان ملل را دعوت به :
1-تلاش در جهت حل سریع مشکلات مربوط به مراحل پرونده پناهندگی شان
2-توجه به وضعیت معیشتی و ارائه کمکهای مادی به پناهندگان
3-رسیدگی سریع به خواستهایشان که همانا عمل به مفاد کنوانسیون 1951 ژنو و پروتکلهای الحاقی آن در مورد حقوق پناهندگان می باشند
Raping woman, killing children, pillaging agricultural villages, destroying lives.
The attention of the world is much too slowly turning its head to address the rampant and unmitigated devastation occurring in Sudan that has in the past 18 months left more than 50,000 savagely murdered and 1.5 million more among the families of those unfortunate dead as displaced refugees in ill-equipped camps and neighboring countries. This is a UN recognized human rights atrocity; the situation in Sudan is a grave emergency! Devastatingly, the attention that Sudan has received from commercial media - which is largely focused on the situation in Iraq - has not expressed the gravity of the situation.
Who is killing who in Sudan and why? The current campaign of ethnic cleansing is intent on eliminating several sedentary African tribal groups, motivated by a struggle for power in Khartoum, Sudan's capital. The killing campaign is being conducted by a hired militia at the bidding of an imposed, abusive, and controversial government struggling to retain its power over a nation of people that wants the fanatical government routed. While the urgency for action and assistance has never been keener, the conflict has actually been long standing. Sudan as a whole has been embroiled in 50 years of civil war and rebellion between the usually tyrannical power in Khartoum and the southern populations that do not want to live under the Khartoum government's religious and dictatorial policies.
To understand why the groups are in conflict, you need to first acquaint yourself with the region. Sudan is in East Africa, just South of Egypt, East of Chad, and North of Kenya. The population is a conglomerate of Arabs and Africans, nomadic pastoralists and farmers, Muslims, Christians, and Animists (those believing that everything in nature has a soul). These people of Sudan have been in conflict ever since the British abandoned the region in 1956. Upon their leaving, the British undemocratically passed control to one group of ethnically-foreign Arab northerners in the capital city, Khartoum. This empowered groups' policy of disregarding civil rights and instituting classical Islamic rule over the ethnically diverse Southern population has spawned the 50 years of civil war, famine, and human rights violations that have never been effectively dealt with. Compounded by the discovery of oil in the Sudan South in the 1970s, the Northern dictatorial government breached beyond merely unfair policy and began trying to dominate the natural resources of the South. Still, the worst of problems had yet to come.
By the 1980s, a series of poignant civil rights abuses aroused fear in the southern populations. The increasingly fanatical Islamized northern government had been abusing its power by dismantling the constitutional rights for people in the southern region and by imposing Shariya Law - traditional Muslim Law Code - over the ethnically diverse southern populations. In 1985, the southern borne Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) led a popular uprising that succeeded in expelling the Northern Arab government. The SPLM revolt was successful in replacing the government and at ushering in the installation of a democratically oriented - but still religious - Islamic government. This progress lead to peace talks that gave many hope for a stable Sudan; but the steps forward were not to last. In 1989, as peace agreements were being consolidated between the democratized Islamic government in Khartoum and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement in the South and just as the government was finally preparing to freeze the Shariya Islamic Law Code, General Omar al-Bashir lead the National Islamic Front in a coup against the liberating government to bring back the authoritarian Arabic form of Islamic government.
The Southern Sudanese hopes' had been dashed and there worst fears rekindled; upon Omar's imposition, he abolished the constitution that protected the Southern populations, censured his opponents by outlawing opposition parties, and he revamped Khartoum's control of the controversial Shariya Law by imposing, additionally, a traditional Islamic Justice System which began dealing out death liberally. Omar then proceeded to declare Jihad, a holy war in the name of Mohammad, against the non-Muslim and democratic African-Muslim people of Sudan.
The National Islamic Front government continued to polarize the Sudanese people and its actions began even to alienate Khartoum from its neighboring countries. Accused of attempting to incite jihad in eastern neighbor Eritrea, and of assisting in an assassination attempt on Egyptian President Mubarak during his visit to Sudan's eastern neighbor Ethiopia, and because Sudan was recognized for harboring terrorists such as Osama bin Laden who used Sudan as a base for executing the 1998 bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, General Omar's government became regionally isolated but Omar al-Bashir remains in power still today.
Omar's fundamentalist government, supported by their oil reserves, military technology, and fear, continue to push forward. Their campaign however is not fueled by purely by religious zeal as it may appear at first glance. It is much more ethnically motivated, pitting the Arabic Muslim government against the African, dark-skinned Muslim and non-Muslims of greater Sudan. The African Muslims are mostly sedentary tribal peoples, agricultural societies that embrace diversity. The Arabic government fosters the form of ethnic fanaticism that has plagued the Middle East, such as in Iraq where Arabic Sunnis have in the past threatened and massacred Islamic Shiites and Kurds.
By 2003, Omar's mistreatment of even his northern contingents and tribal populations in the area called Darfur, lead the tribal groups to mount a rebellion. In April 2003, in the name of human, social, and economic rights, and impassioned by their suffering, the Muslim tribal peoples of the Fur, the Zaghawa, and the Massaleit, allied under the two names, the Sudanese Liberation Movement (SLM) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), took up arms against Omar's militarily defended government. Despite inferior resources, they actually achieved a string of victories.
At this point, fearing further retaliation, Omar made one of the most horrific moves that any dictator could entertain. He called upon nomadic Arabic horsemen in Sudan to enlist in a Janjaweed militia, promising a gun and additional payment of $116 a month in order to rape, route, and kill the African people of Darfur. Janjaweed is translated from Arabic as "man with a gun on a horse" but the Janjaweed are generally known as nomadic bandits. The government motivated the Janjaweed to carry out their mission in the Darfur region with racist incentive; told that their job was to cleanse Darfur of its darker skinned inhabitants. They were too given the additional incentive that their monthly payment would come from the booty plundered in the villages which they attacked.
For the last 18 months, the janjaweed have terrorized unabashed the tribal people of Darfur with a scorched earth policy, destroying the villages they attack. "They dump human corpses in wells to contaminate the water supply, essentially doing whatever is necessary to force the black African Muslims from their land never to return" says the report from the office of Congressman Wolf on what he witnessed while visiting.
You know when they are coming because they don't come alone. First you here the low pitched hum of the helicopters approaching. This is when most of the able villagers dash into the forest for sake of their lives. As the helicopter gun ship arrives, it first strafes the village destroying housing and killing people that have not left. It will often unload supplies for the janjaweed militia that follow close behind, coming out of the forest on horseback to finish the killing, raping, and destruction making the village uninhabitable, and to collect bounty from the village.
The government of Omar al-Bashir denies involvement, aid, or support of the raids. They maintain that the culprits are just uncontrolled bandits. Their overt lie is not much believed by anyone, as it is plainly obvious that the nomadic janjaweed alone are by no means capable to be flying the attack helicopters.
To date, the actions of the government and its militia have displaced over 1 million people from their homes, consolidating them into 129 crowded concentration camps monitored and surrounded by more janjaweed. These are what is called internally displaced people (IDPs). Their camps are ill-resourced. In Mornay, the largest camp with 70,000 people, rains carry human excrement back through the camp. At least 160 thousand Darfurians have escaped across the western border of Sudan to Chad. Few of them will ever be able to return to their home. If the refugees leave their camp, the janjaweed are there waiting for them just beyond the borders says the Wolf Congressional report. Rape of Sudanese woman is a daily reality for these refugees. They are forced to accept it, they must leave the camp to gather firewood for their families and straw to feed their cattle. The janjaweed tell the girls they rape that they are "trying to make their babies lighter." The janjaweed have even instituted a policy of branding the raped girls and woman so as not to mistake them. Murder of the male IDPs is a constant threat as well.
This is a holocaust going in Sudan today, directly in our site. After the holocaust of WWII where six million Jews were murdered by the Nazi forces, and again after failing to intervene to stop the devastating genocide of 800,000 ethnic Tutsis in Rwanda in 1994, the world has now twice said "never again" to genocide. This is your chance to not only to say never again but to act on your intention. Get informed, read a few articles, you will understand the situation and realize why it is so devastatingly clear that this is a genocide that must be confronted immediately.
In the past months, the government in Sudan has been coming under increased - but still feeble - international pressure to address and respond to the crises. Kofi Anan and Colin Powell have both visited the region and agree it is a problem that needs to be dealt with, but what have they done to accomplish this? Currently the UN is discussing so they can make a declaration as to whether or not these atrocities may be considered a genocide. This is after a recent Security Council Resolution that urged the Khartoum government to better control the devastation in the region and to help ensure the security in the IDP camps. Do you believe it is appropriate to hold the same group which is responsible for instigating the atrocity as the group to hold responsible for ensuring the security of the region? Obviously the UN Security Council does. So who is guarding the camps? The janjaweed, the same people that were commissioned and brainwashed for murdering the Darfurians are now being publicly sanctioned by the UN to carry "defensive" weapons that will allow them to defend the safety of the black African people in the refugee camps.
The UN Security Council Resolution had the opportunity to send a clear message to the Khartoum government. Instead what do they do? They approved that more African Union monitoring forces should come to Sudan to oversee the situation. They failed to issue an arms embargo ensuring the Sudan government will have continued access to weapons. The UN also failed to inflict any real pressure on the Sudan government by passing on their opportunity to impose an oil embargo. An embargo would have forced Sudan to address the problem.
"The [UN] Security Council has ensured that the Sudanese government will have the resources necessary to continue its scorched-earth campaign in Darfur," said Human Rights Watch, an international non-profit human rights watchdog group. Instead of providing a resolution that sends a clear message to Khartoum indicating how serious the world is about putting an end to the atrocities, they committed a toothless resolution providing no real incentive for al-Bashir to respond.
This makes good sense. The UN is incapable of responding appropriately to human rights issues. You will agree if you look at who is one of the 14 member states on the UN Human Rights Commission: Sudan. Yes, the same government that fosters the genocide of ethnically African black Muslims in Sudan is a voting member on human rights issues.
Reasonably, you are probably appalled by what you have learned about Sudan. You know you can not rely on the UN to do anything constructive regarding this matter. Little known to most, the United States has actually been supporting the reabsorption of refugees from Sudan. Four years ago, the United States allowed the immigration of 7,000 black Sudanese refugees, actually victims of a different struggle against the same government. Many of these are young boys from southern Sudan who lost their parents violently while trying to escape the onslaught of northern Sudanese forces. They are now known as the Lost Boys. A group of at least 100 of them now call San Diego their home and are actively trying to build themselves a new life in this new world, along with all the trappings of modernity.
Take it upon yourself to learn, to discuss, and to represent what you know is right. Make sure that who ever wins the election for president on November 2 knows that giving attention to Sudan needs to be a priority for the United States. Don't wait to speak out and don't be afraid to raise the issue, it is not a very contested topic outside Sudan.
Resources for your learning interest:
Website about the Sudanese refugees experience starting a new life in the US:
International Crisis Group, human crisis watch group:
Document of Congressman Wolf's impression.
This petition urgently requests for a fair treatment and justice for Reverend Rinaldy Damanik. He has been charged over 'the suspect in the outbreak of violence' and is held captive under Indonesian Police. Despite failing to find any charge against Rev. Damanik, Indonesian Police have twice extended his detention. This innocent man awaits a trial for a crime he never committed. If he is convicted, Reverend Rinaldy will possibly face long years in prison or even the death penalty.
Please find compassion in your heart and rescue this man from any penalty he does not deserve. I believe that he has no malice in his heart and only seek to love and serve others.
He is a 'respected leader who united thousands of refugees'. These same refugees of Tetena are now, also, strongly behind Rev. Damanik. They are protesting his innocence.
The last thing we want to happen in this world of turmoil and terror is for people like Rinaldy Damanik to be executed. They are light bearers who bring peace and unity within a broken society. What we are doing for them is not enough. They and their families deserve much, much, much more respect and protection than we currently give.
Please, I ask again, help pardon Rinaldy Damanik from such an unfair treatment. He is not the one who should be paying for such conspiracy.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
This Petition was started to lobby for the change of prohibitive U.S. Policy that makes it virtually impossible for North Korean refugees, in particular the young orphaned children, who are currently living in fear and hiding in China, to seek asylum and resettlement in the U.S. Countless thousands of these young children live on the streets under the constant threat of hunger, exploitation, abuse, arrest and repatriation. Recent crackdowns by the Chinese, who treat these refugees as illegal aliens, have worsened the situation, and immediate action is critical to saving these fragile lives.
Refugees are people who are fleeing from serious danger. ie war, political persecution, famine, economic crisis or natural disasters. In the uk asylum seekers face difficulties and barriers: widespread, indiscriminate detention; poverty; poor housing; poor access to healthcare; lack of training and employment opportunities.
In housing, lower standards are applied for families seeking asylum than for other families. The vouchers refugee families receive are set at a lower value than Income Support levels and stigmatise asylum-seekers. Many children who have lost their families and seek asylum do not receive the same care that is routinely offered to other children in need. When the Government signed up to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1991, they made an exception - refugee children. Asylum seekers come here because their lives and/or the wellbeing of their families and homes are in danger. They would not choose to leave there homes and families out of choice. They are the victims of war and famine and drought and poverty and they need our help. we are a country of plenty, and it is our responsibility as a civilised, developed nation and as human beings to give these people a home and a chance and treat them with compassion and respect.
Refugees are people who are fleeing from serious danger. ie war, political persecution, famine, economic crisis or natural disasters. In the UK asylum seekers face difficulties and barriers: widespread, indiscriminate detention; poverty; poor housing; poor access to healthcare; lack of training and employment opportunities. In housing, lower standards are applied for families seeking asylum than for other families.
The vouchers refugee families receive are set at a lower value than Income Support levels and stigmatise asylum-seekers. Moreover, many children who have lost their families and seek asylum do not receive the same care that is routinely offered to other children in need.
When the Government signed up to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1991, they made an exception - refugee children. Asylum seekers come here because their lives and/or the wellbeing of their families and homes are in danger. They would not choose to leave there homes and families out of choice. They are the victims of war and famine and drought and poverty and they need our help. We are a country of plenty, and it is our responsibility as a civilised, developed nation and as human beings to give these people a home and a chance and treat them with compassion and respect.