Australia’s human rights record under fire

AUSTRALIA’S track record on asylum seekers and failure to raise human rights abuses with Asian countries has been criticised in a global report card.

In its 2014 annual report, Human Rights Watch accuses Australia of demonising asylum seekers trying to reach the country by boat.

“In 2013, successive Australian governments continued to engage in scare-mongering politics at the expense of the rights of asylum seekers and refugees,” the report says.

“(They) have prioritised domestic politics over Australia’s international legal obligations.”
“Australia also has been increasingly unwilling to publicly raise human rights abuses in countries with which it has strong trade or security ties, fearing that doing so would harm its relations with Asian governments,” the report authors wrote.

Read more here


11 thoughts on “Australia’s human rights record under fire

  1. I don’t even know where to begin on this one so I’ll throw in something ‘different’ …

    White folks ‘evolving’ culture right on my doorstep.

    The government have acknowledged the traditional owners of the land in the Canberra region as the Ngunnawal people. It is the sacred site of the Ngarigu. So our stupid politicians are ‘respecting’ the wrong people in the National Capital … to the world.

    During the dispute, the Ngarigu people proved their traditional ownership legally.

    Made no difference.

    The stupid government gives it to the Ngunnawal people, who aren’t even a language people.


    Simply because certain white folks don’t like the way some Ngarigu people behave.

    It’s like giving the apaches ownership of a Sioux burial ground.

    Welcome to Australia…. land of secrets and lies.


      • Fair question dabs. Having worked with the Aboriginal community for 20 plus years, I have reasonable understanding… but from a whitefellas perspective who’s had many experiences. David Suzuki said something interesting the other day on “One plus one” …. “Tribal people respect their elders… because they have lived a lifetime. Today we treat old people with DIS-respect in the west… put them away… what do they know? They can’t even understand Facebook or twitter..” But working with Aboriginal people, and learning their history gave me a totally different outlook. Phillip Adams even said I should write a book, with my many anecdotes. But back to your question, as best as I can put it…

        The Australian Aboriginal are the only race of people in Australia who have been legally un-free in a free country, and suffered the consequences of that fact.

        The invasion, the rapes, the murders, the white Australia policy, the lies, the genocide, the diseases, the displacements, the alcohol, the reservations, the missionaries, the stolen generations, very similar to the native Americans who suffer the same plight today.

        Allow me to give you just one an example of how they’re ‘different’ ….

        In the early 1960’s I was travelling out back as a muso in a country band… we were all whitefellas.

        In the local pub, the cop says to me… ” Ya didn’t hit any boogs on the way into town did ya? Only they wander all over the road like bloody sheep see? Anyway.. if ya do… just chuck ’em over the side of the road will ya? I’m sick of all the bloody paperwork…” And on and on etc etc ….

        Suffice to say… if someone recorded my experiences… it would make John Pilger look like Walt Disney.

        And I certainly don’t want to write about it … too miserable. I don’t mind talking about it, but someone else can write it.

        Sorry no link…. but my website is…


      • Dabbles, the introduction of special benefits available to Aboriginal people brought about a remarkable change. Prior to that you would see them downcast, silent, living an inferior role. If one could get away with it, Aboriginal descent would never be admitted.

        Suddenly there was cause to acknowledge your descent, to claim the benefits, and pride in that racial heritage began to appear. This is one instance where throwing money at a problem can be a big part of the solution.

        But for how long should this special treatment go on? Surely the time must come when we are all treated alike. When? Jimbo would have a better idea than I would.


      • I knew that copper that you describe below, Jimbo. and another thousand of two of his close relatives….all of them from in and around Melbourne.
        ……..and you’d’ve thought I was a blackfella!

        What I meant was that the State ~ and the mongrels that operate it ~ treat EVERYBODY like shit.
        Only the ‘angle of attack’ varies ~ sometimes due to race (or colour) ~ and I think (as a generalisation) whitefellers have a better ‘native’ grasp of the system, and so know how to use it better. And as a cultural attribute are often more inclined to fight.
        I’m in court tomorrow to face a burglary charge (to do with a dog rescue) and taunted the coppers that I could beat the charge whilst standing on my head, drinking a beer and singing Dixie. (in a higher court)
        Unfortunately they took me at my word, and told me the Burglary would be dropped, and I’d be charged with Trespassing ~ a summary offence to be heard in the magistrate’s court. (six months max for Trespassing as compared to 10 years for Burglary) ….
        At this point most malefactors breath a sigh of relief and are willing to plead it out. Well I’ve informed the court that I’m going to fight it (though Trespass is MUCH harder to beat than Burglary) and pissed them off no end!

        I’ve noticed the blackfellers have been improving their grasp of the ‘white way’ over the last few decades….bit by bit, and more of them all the time are are ‘having a go’ too.

        Good stuff; but they don’t need ‘different’ treatment ~ just more familiarity with the realities that exist. And a bit of respect for the other animals in their environment. I could easily run over a few of them myself when I see the way they treat dogs….or just about anything else. It’s a ‘cultural thing’ ~ and a ‘culture’ that has outlived its day. It should be eulogised and buried.

        That said, it was a black kid that started me on my criminal career: he was a cultural ‘natural’. Talked me into stealing a pushbike I admired, and then took me ~ and the bike ~ around to my house and sold it to my father for thirty bob!
        Gawd I was gullible!!
        ….almost christian! 🙂


  2. But still unfair (In my opinion)… to target Australia. Ponder this ….

    If thousands of white women and children died of starvation every day just like ….

    but then … they wouldn’t would they?


    • Yep. But so could the blackfellers. (see response to Jimbo above)
      If we pander to a culture ( or anything else) so past its use-by date then there’s no way of fruitfully reconciling people on a contemporary level.

      What if, for (an extreme) example, some obscure ‘cultural’ ritual demanded that cannibalism must be the order of the day? (as in New Guinea, say)
      Do you accommodate the ‘culture’, have a helpful and accepting Centrelink provide the condiments and suitable pots, or violently suppress the practice?

      I reckon there’s a better way. The modern world for all its faults and failures, has a LOT more to offer than stoneage (or even bronzeage ~ read jewish) so-called ‘culture’. (It’s called ‘adaptability’ in evolutionary terms.)

      In the current mode, next thing you know PC will be insisting we reintroduce ‘traditional’ plague-bearing rats.


      • thr first Australians are still waiting for government to obey its own laws, the same laws they apply to the first Australians, the mabo rulling has very serious implications for Australias nationhood, first Australians understand this and are waiting for the law, just-us to take its natural course, but law only applies when it suits government, is current day Australia legal? im not to sure, for Australia to be settled it reqires a treaty or as is claimed terra nullius, we were not settled, it was not a conquest as that requies an official war, we did not have one, so you can see how laws and so called benefits only extend so far, thats the real difference in treatment of the first australians, the law only applies to them when they are in the wrong but they and parts of broader society understand they dont receive any justice I mean just-us , their main concern is justice, hard to achieve with an illegal government who understand their perilous position, first Australians are a powerful people who withstood genocide, if it wasnt genocide and they didnt have a real claim to this country the government and the murdoch rags would be all over their claims of sovereignty and genocide but they are reduced to continued claims of disfunction and alcoholism, same old tags and labels, but no real rebuttal of the first Australians claims of unceeded sovereignty, they are mysteriously quite about our legal standing as a nation, first Australians are smarter then people give credit for, maybe thats why they continue to gain rights while our leaders and possibly 75% of the population are against real rights for them, they are strong and smart


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