Refugee groups condemn hunger striker, Omid, being forced back to Nauru

| December 10, 2012 | Reply

Refugee groups have condemned the Minister’s decision to return Iranian asylum seeker and hunger striker to Nauru. Omid was brought from Nauru to Australia suffering kidney failure after 50 days on hunger strike.

“The Minister has a callous disregard for Omid’s welfare. This has all the signs of repeating the same abuses that resulted from the cat and mouse games that the British government played with hunger striking suffragettes at the turn of the last century,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“Nothing has changed on Nauru. The idea that Omid has recovered his health after 50 days on hunger strike is ridiculous. The Minister must know that returning Omid to the mental torment of Nauru is only likely to lead to him restarting the hunger strike. Perhaps it will be only days before the government is flying him back to Australia.

“It is a cold calculated decision that puts Omid’s life at risk again.

“To return Omid only days after hundreds of asylum seekers were released into the Australian community reveals the depths of cruelty that Chris Bowen and the Labor government have stooped to.

“The Pacific Solution is a costly farce. The asylum seekers on Nauru and Manus Island are the victims of a shabby domestic political war that Labor is waging with the Liberals over which party is the toughest on refugees.

“The Pacific Solution has done nothing to save lives at sea; now Chris Bowen is willing to sacrifice the lives of asylum seeker condemned to Nauru and Manus Island. The horrific conditions on the island guarantee more protest and guarantee more asylum seekers will be bought to Australia.”

At least two more asylum seekers brought from Nauru remain in hospital in Australia.

For more information contact Ian Rintoul mob 0417 275 713

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