Friday, August 10, 2007

Day 29: EXCISION ZONE: Latitude 23 degrees south

We camped at the 23 degrees south latitude and were treated to a big wide sun setting into the ocean last night. Whilst I slept right on the beach to the sounds of lapping water, Dave spent the night up on a dune as he was expecting an early morning call for an interview with 3CR (Melbourne)… and it was… 4 in the morn our time!!

I woke up to the sight where, to my left (south), anybody arriving on an Australian island by boat seeking protection could lodge a valid visa application in Australia, thus having access to the onshore processing system (and its various safeguards). However if a boat was to land on an island to my right (north), the asylum seeker on board would not have access to the above system and supports and can be forcibly removed to places such as Nauru & Papua New Guinea – being processed through the offshore system.

Being here, looking to my left and right, it feels absurd that legislation like this can exist… purely to prevent asylum seekers coming to Australia. Most of these islands are considered to be Australia for every other aspect…Australian’s have lived there ever since the country has existed, we are happy to extract natural resources to benefit economically, etc etc but for this above reason it seems like it is not considered to be truly Australian?? I find it bizarre that this exists…that it can be allowed to happen…that parts of Australia can be removed from the country to suit a particular purpose. It’s like we want to play both sides of the fence…and in the middle vulnerable people are unfairly trapped, damaged and broken…and I wonder, how do we feel about being responsible for such human suffering??

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