Edmund Rice Centre confirms 39 more deportations to danger

The Edmund Rice Centre says its latest investigations into deported asylum seekers have located another 39 people who have been deported to dangerous situations, many of whom were misled by the Government into returning to their homelands.

Releasing its report Deported to Danger II, Director Phil Glendenning said that in 2006, the Centre had interviewed 41 asylum seekers, 36 for the first time and five for the second time.

The Centre had made contact with over 200 people from 20 countries, he said.

"The vast majority are living in danger. Some have been killed."

He says the report was sent to the Immigration Minister and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva.

The report found that 39 of the 41 were deported to danger. Two have found welcome in New Zealand.

"We believe the experiences of these men provide strong evidence that their claims were rejected based on flawed assessments," Mr Glendenning said.

"Factors contributing to such flawed assessments include lack of relevant and sometimes crucial knowledge of the complex, historical, social cultural realities of an asylum seeker's homeland.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the report says the Government had secured the return of more than half the Afghan asylum seekers on Nauru in 2003 by a "mixture of inducements and threats". It had told the detainees Afghanistan was safe because the Taliban had been ousted and a legitimate government installed.

"Pressures and inducements used to persuade these men to accept removal indicate that the term 'voluntary' is unjustified," Mr Glendenning said.

"Finally fundamental reform is needed if we are to honour human rights obligations and the values they enshrine."

"Those who are in danger have compelling cases for their claims to be reassessed," Mr Glendenning concluded.

Edmund Rice Centre Report Confirms a Further 39 people Deported to Danger (Edmund Rice Centre, Media Release, 3/10/06)
Afghans led into peril, says report (Sydney Morning Herald 4/10/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Killed asylum seeker details sent to DIMA (CathNews, 14/8/06)
Off-shore processing failed dead asylum seekers: Edmund Rice (CathNews, 10/8/06)
Nine rejected asylum seekers killed: Edmund Rice Centre (CathNews, 8/8/06)
Detention stuff-ups no surprise to Edmund Rice researchers (CathNews, 3/5/05)
Edmund Rice Centre claims at least 35 refugees sent back to danger (CathNews, 29/9/04)
Bishops welcome release of detention centre children (CathNews, 26/8/03)

4 Oct 2006