Monday, June 22, 2015

More horror from Australia's Pacific gulag

More horror from Australia's Pacific gulag: guards filming themselves having sex with refugees:

Charlotte Wilson was, until February this year, a Save the Children case manager at the Nauru Regional Processing Centre. In her explosive submission to the Senate inquiry, which is investigating allegations of abuse at the facility, she claims to have been told it was "acknowledged in management meetings between service providers" that acts of "solicitation" were occurring in the community between female refugees and Australian security officers employed by Wilson Security.

"It was also established that these acts had been filmed and circulated around Wilson staff," she said, of the rumours that began to circulate in January. She added: "I was also told that because prostitution is legal on Nauru that no action was being taken against the staff members involved."

In her submission, which hasn't yet been made public but has been obtained by Fairfax Media, Ms Wilson alleges she witnessed a security guard tell a group of single Somali women that if they run away, they would get "raped by the local boys".

In March, a review into sexual abuse at Nauru found evidence of rape, sexual assault of minors and guards exchanging cannabis for sexual favours from female detainees.

Treating it simply as prostitution ignores the very real power imbalance between guards and refugees, and the real control the former exert over the latter's lives. But its typical of a government which has set up a horrorshow and doesn't want to take any responsibility for the results.

Meanwhile, the immigration department also told doctors that it didn't want to hear about the mental harm caused by detention - presumably to prevent a documentary record of it, or because they'd have to act on the information of they were informed of it (just like torture). So, the government's basic duty of care is now being compromised out of a political demand from Ministers for secrecy and cruelty.

Torture. Sexual exploitation. A denial of human rights. At what stage do we declare Australia's refugee policy to be a crime against humanity?