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(en) Australia, Sydney activists occupy dept of immigration offices

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Tue, 27 Jan 2004 11:08:10 +0100 (CET)

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From: miss moon <tveye_-A-hotmail.com>
This morning anti authoritarians occupied the offices of DIMIA (department
of immigration, multicultural and indigenous affairs) in Sydney Australia.
the occupation was timed to take place the day after 'Australia day" a national
holiday which calls on citizens to celebrate the colonisation of Australia.
Acting in support of refugees held in detention camps both on and offshore
australia, and those who are on temporary protection visas. About 20 people
occupied the offices, some on the ground floor , while others worked their
way though out the building, visiting each DIMIA department in turn.
Outwitting police and security by leaving each floor as they were asked to,
then moving on to the next!

Demonstrators wore tape on their mouths and carried pictures of people
detained in the camps. Flyers giving information about the situation of
refugees were handed out and pictures of the detention camps and detainees
were taped to the walls and windows of the dept of immigration. Others held
up a banner which read 'no detention - permanent protection.'

Most refugee advocacy groups work though lobbying and law courts, some of
these groups denounce direct action as 'too confrontational'. Up until
recently Refugees on Nauru have been hunger striking, they suspended their
strike after a promise by the Australian governent of an independant medical
assesment of their conditions, this medical assesment has since been denied.

People inside the camps are protesting in the only ways they can and
activists will continue to support them with direct action on the out side.
The immigration department were obviously suprised by the action, their
security was inadequate and they were forced to close their doors for about
half and hour , disrupting their 'business as usual'.
much fun was had by all.

xx cyclone veronica

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