Protest at the Australian Embassy: For asylum rights for Merak refugees and against ‘Indonesian Solution’.
Date: 18 January 2010
Place: The Australian High Commission, Strand, London WC2B 4LA
(corner of the Aldwych and the Strand. Nearest Tube station: Temple)
Leaflet -> jan18. Call 07908050217 if you need more information.
Pic: One of the letters written by children on the boat- This one is written by 12 year old T.Thilaksan. Full version in Tamil attached below.
Join the International Protest
12:30 – 1:30 PM
Kevin Rudd’s office, 70 Phillip Street Sydney.
At the Clock Tower, Beaumont St, Hamilton
5:30 pm outside the State Library, Cnr Swanston/Latrobe Streets, Melbourne
Opposite Price Water House Cooper’s Building
186-194 Quay St, Auckland
March up Queen Street at 5pm.
March will conclude opposite Aotea Square
11am – 2pm
175 Bloor Street, East Toronto
Washington: Email and postcard campaign
Malaysia : Email and postcard campaign
Grant Asylum to Tamil refugees in Merak – 18th January Protest
It is now over 100 days that these refugees, including children, have been held in the tiny boat with no facilities. It would be unacceptable to keep animals in such crowded and harsh conditions for this long. Having gone through so much suffering due to war, all these refugees are in dire need of better care. It is beyond belief that the Australian government thinks it is acceptable to ignore such cruelty right on its border. In fact the Australian government is responsible for their detention in Merak. The refugees’ boat was stopped by the Indonesian navy on direct instruction from the Australian Prime Minister, Mr Kevin Rudd.
Incredibly the Australian and Indonesian governments want to give the impression that these refugees do not want to leave the boat where they suffer so badly. On the contrary, the refugees can’t wait to get off the boat but they are given no other acceptable choice. The only option on offer is to suffer similar, sometimes even worse, conditions in Indonesian detention centres for many years. The Indonesian government in not bound by the international refugee convention. Recently the Sri Lankan authorities, the very people most feared by the refugees, were allowed to interrogate Sri Lankan detainees. This is a fate that these refugees refuse to accept. For them it is almost the same as jumping into the Merak sea.
But we cannot give up the fight. Not a single person on the boat should be returned back to Sri Lanka where they face imprisonment, torture and death. They should be allowed to lead a decent life. But the refugees are tired, sick and frustrated. We must act fast and intensify our fight to save them. We must find a quick and favourable solution to their problem.
Come to the protest.
Click to enlarge the images below.