Men of Manus

Men of Manus – Nick McKenzie, SMH, 10 September 2016 

The Human Rights Law Centre recently travelled to Manus in an attempt to document the stories of the 1000 or so asylum seekers on the island. Around half have so far been assessed as refugees. The centre interviewed dozens of men about their experiences in offshore detention. Detained for up to three years, the men are in limbo after the federal government ruled out settling any of them in Australia, including those with family here.

Omid*, 37, Afghanistan (not real name)

Mohammad Sharif Rahmati, 37, from Afghanistan.

Omid loves the Bard. The husband and father has, with a dictionary in hand, read Romeo and Juliet five times while on Manus. Each reading brings a new understanding of the play and the English language. He sometimes catches himself crying while reading a scene. His work for a US military contractor led to death threats from the Taliban. A member of the Hazara minority, he planned to seek sanctuary in Australia, followed by his wife and son. Instead, he now calls them twice a week from PNG, where he has been deemed a refugee. They are in hiding in an unnamed country.

Then there’s …

Mamud el Hasson, 20, Rohingyan, Abdul Aziz, 26, Sudan,  Shahzad Ahmad, 26, Pakistan,  Mehdi, 31, Iran, Aadil*, 25, Iran (not real name),, Amir, 23, Iran, Imran Mohammad, 22, Rohingyan, Ali Muhammad, 42, Pakistan, and so many more. 

Read the full article here

And go to GetUp’s #BringThemHere campaign for the Men of Manus here