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Asylum seekers in Australia should be treated with greater respect

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Australia’s treatment of Asylum Seekers has become a disgrace, from our violation of our international treaties, mandatory detention centre and violation of basic human rights. We have changed from a country which bases its ideal on democracy, freedom and justice to that of a country that refuses to accept refugees on the ground of humanitarian. The Australia Government should treat asylum seekers with greater respect, one will guarantee them life, liberty and values. The universal declaration of human rights is the most widely accepted international convention in human history. Most countries in the world are parties to it. Article 14 of the universal declaration of human rights provides that every person has a right to seek asylum in any territory to which they can gain access. Despite that almost universally ‘accepted’ rule, when a person arrives in Australia and seeks asylum, we lock them up. We lock them up indefinitely and in conditions of the utmost harshness.

Australia is creating a situation where mandatory detention not only breaches international law, but also our obligation towards Asylum seeker as a whole. We are creating a situation where women and children can be held in detention centre that lacks proper care and safety. The Australian Government should stop depriving refugees of their basic rights and treat them as a proper human being. The Government’s treatment toward Asylum seeker is anything but respectful and changes are needed to ensure that Asylum seekers are treated human and with dignity. Australia is becoming known as one of the toughest countries on asylum seekers who arrive illegally on its shores. Its strict mandatory detention policy is widely criticized by the UN, refugee organizations, and opposition parties in Australia. The policy is not only arbitrary, but also flawed.

Recent events, such as the Tampa affair, child overboard affair, Cornea Rea, Nauru etc has revealed the willingness of our Government’s to deter Asylum seeker from arriving and to ensured that their condition they experience upon arrival will be as bad, if not worse, than the conditions they left behind. Mandatory Detention Centre simply exist to reduce the number of Asylum seekers entering Australia and to prevent more from coming. Millions of illegal immigrants arrive in Australia and yet the Government is keener in detaining those in danger rather than those that shouldn’t be here. The failure of the Howard Government to treat Asylum seeker with greater respect will mean the destruction of thousands and thousands of lives. The treatment of Howard Government toward refugees should improve, as Asylum seekers are already exposed to lose of basic human rights.

Detention Centre does not offer a safe environment of safety and security that meets adequate standard. Asylum seekers and especially children are exposed to a wide range of physical and psychological problem, relating poor health, disorders, self-destructive behaviours, depression, stress etc. Furthermore, children are not only affected by what happens to them, but they are also deprived of developmental necessities such as school and education. The Australia mandatory policy clearly fails to meet the very basic humanitarian needs of the individuals it imprisons. For the children and the family unit as a whole, the implications are particularly severe, with their physical and mental health affected. Detainees are also deprived of their right to a fair trail, a clear breach of their rights.

The Howard Government should at least treat asylum seeker with greater respect, something that they currently lack. Asylum seekers in Australia should be treated with greater respect. They are here on humanitarian ground and the Government should treat anyone in danger with basic respect, regardless of their social, ethnic or religious background. Treating refugees with greater respect is the least the Howard Government can do after violation of human rights, mandatory detention centre and their unfulfilled obligation to international treaties.

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