Support Aziz to speak about life in detention on Manus Island
Abdul Aziz Muhamat is a defender of refugee rights and aspiring lawyer. The Australian government have trapped him and hundreds of other refugees and asylum seekers in indefinite limbo on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea, one of Australia’s ‘offshore processing centres’. Manus Island is notorious for its inhumane conditions - up to 600 men held together in stifling heat, in unclean and unsafe living conditions and with little access to physical or mental health support. Six men have died there.
Aziz speaks out about his experiences - exposing the brutality of Australia's immigration policies. Because of his courageous work, Aziz has been arrested, intimidated and threatened. But he refuses to be silenced.
“My name is Aziz, my friends call me 'Mandela' because I stand up for what I believe in. In 2013 I fled my home in Sudan, one of hundreds of thousands who have fled conflict. I tried to seek safety in Australia, but instead their Government sent me to suffer in the detention centre on Manus Island.
Five years later, and I am still here. Over the last 5 years on Manus we have suffered as pawns in an unending political game. People on Manus are afraid to speak up, that if they speak out they’ll end up in jail. Those labelled as troublemakers have been arrested and detained without charge.
I was held without charge by Papua New Guinean police in 2015 for holding a hunger strike with other detainees. But that hasn’t silenced me or stopped me resisting. I’ll keep resisting until one day we’re all free. So I speak to the media about the situation on Manus, share updates on Twitter, record a podcast, and protest peacefully against human rights violations.
My hope is that the suffering will end. I hope Australians understand that we are humans, just like them. We want the same things, safety, shelter and freedom. To do so, we need to be allowed to speak out, to let the world know what’s happening on Manus.
Ask the Australian government to allow us to speak out without fear of being arrested, harassed, or detained.
Yours sincerely - Aziz"
Call on Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and demand that:
- Abdul Aziz is able to carry out legitimate human rights work without being subject to further arrest, intimidation or threats.
- The Australian government ends ‘offshore processing’ and brings Abdul Aziz Muhamat and all refugees and people seeking asylum to Australia or a safe third country.
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