Iranian Refugees at Baxter South Australia sign now


To: United Nations and Human Rights Watch

We wish to draw your attention to the situation facing Iranian refugees being held at Baxter Immigration Detention Centre in Port Augusta, South Australia. There are approximately 70 Iranians in this group, including women and small children. The majority of these people have been detained for up to 5 years.

We specifically draw your attention to the Australian Governments long delays in dealing with claims for asylum lodged by Iranian refugees, and the fact that the Government has not provided sufficient reason for their extended detention. Many of the Iranians at Baxter Detention Centre have developed a mental illness as a result of their incarceration, such as depression and severe anxiety disorders.

During a recent incident in December 2004, 23 of the Iranian refugees were involved in a hunger strike for a period of up to 20 days. Three men spent 12 days on the roof of the gymnasium at Baxter in scorching heat of up to 40 degrees Celsius. Five others had sewn their lips together as a symbol for their lack of voice.

It is claimed by some government authorities that Iran is now a safe country. However, in reality, the Iranian Government is still invading even the most private aspects of life of the Iranian people, leaving many with no choice but to escape their own country in search of freedom and basic human rights.

We, the undersigned, ask the United Nations and Human Rights Watch to put pressure upon the Australian Government to end this inhumane incarceration of Iranian refugees in Australia, and provide the freedom and humane treatment which their native country will not give them.




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Kristine PaulBy:
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United Nations and Human Rights Watch

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