Australian sends refugees to remote island

Australian sends refugees to remote island
CHRISTMAS ISLAND, Australia, Nov 5 — Deep in the jungle on this small island lost in the Indian Ocean, Australia’s new US$370 million (RM1.26 billion) refugee detention center reaches its full power after its lights come on at dusk. Bracketed by rain forest, steep cliffs and the sea, it rises from the enveloping darkness and becomes visible from the island’s only inhabited corner, about 10 miles away.
The center — opened a few days before Christmas but now nearly full with refugees from Afghanistan and Sri Lanka — has come to symbolize what many call one of Australia’s defining fears: the arrival of boat people from Asia

All boat people seeking asylum in Australia are first brought here to Christmas Island, just 220 miles south of Indonesia but nearly 1,000 miles from the Australian mainland, and most are now held at enormous cost within the center’s electrified, 13-foot-high razor-wire fences.

But even as boats arrive every few days, advocates for refugees and even the government’s own human rights commission are urging the government to close the place down and sort the asylum-seekers on the mainland.

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Myanmar election needs Suu Kyi involvement, US says

BANGKOK, Nov 5 — It would be “very hard” for next year’s elections in Myanmar to be legitimate without the involvement of detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, a senior United States official said today .

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Protests find a new home on Facebook and Twitter — Armando Siahaan

NOV 5 — When I opened my Facebook account a few days ago, one particular news feed struck my attention. Dozens of my friends had joined a group called “Gerakan 1,000,000 Facebookers Dukung Chandra Hamzah and Bibit Samad Riyanto” (“The Movement to Get 1,000,000 Facebookers to Support Chandra Hamzah and Bibit Samad Riyanto”).

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Marina Mahathir:Connecting the Dots on Migration

Marina Mahathir:Connecting the Dots on Migration 

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Connecting the Dots on Migration

Yesterday the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched its annual Human Development Report. The theme for this year is Overcoming Barriers: Human Mobility and Development.

I went along to the launch because the HDRs are often very valuable sources of information about human development all over the world. Indeed in the back of the report is a treasure trove of information about almost anything you need to know about any country. For instance, Malaysia is 66th among the High Human Development Index countries, lower than, say, Argentina or the Seychelles or Bulgaria but higher than Brazil, the Russian Federation and Turkey. Our HDI has remained the same from 2006 to 2007 which is the period covered by the report. (Local newspapers only mentioned that we came in third among ASEAN countries in the HDI list; for the record, Singapore is 23rd and Brunei 30th, very far ahead of us.)

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