28.04.16: For 40 days now refugee families detained in the RPC3 compound at the Australian government’s offshore refugee detention center on Nauru have been staging daily protests against the conditions of their detention and to demand that they be granted asylum in Australia. On 14.04.16. the protesting refugees wrote an open letter to the people of Australia calling on them to take action and protest in solidarity with them. The response from people in Australia has been fairly muted – some small protests and solidarity actions by small but dedicated groups of refugee solidarity activists have taken place but nothing on a large scale as of yet. The fact that Australia’s mainstream media are pretty much ignoring the protests is also a huge problem that only adds to the refugee’s overall sense of isolation and abandonment.
In the past two weeks the situation has escalated dramatically on Nauru. On 19.04.16. an Iranian Kurd refugee was arrested and charged by Nauru police after he tried to self-immolate. The man was distraught due to the fact that his one year old child has become severely mentally ill due to the conditions at the detention center. On 27.04.16. detainee ‘QLN027’ began a hunger strike outside the RPC3 compound. Most tragically of all on 27.04.16. a refugee man know only as Omid self-immolated resulting in serious burns to 80% of his body. Omid was taken to the poorly-equipped and unhygienic Ron Hospital on Nauru where he was kept for almost 24 hours before finally being airlifted to the RBWH hospital in Brisbane, Australia. Latest reports indicate that Omid is in a very critical condition and may not survive. Refugee solidarity activists are currently holding a vigil outside the hospital. We have also learned that in the past 24 hours there have been several suicide attempts by refugees held on Nauru, as this article is being written we have also been informed that 2 refugees have swallowed razor blades.
To say that the situation on Nauru is extremely grave is an understatement.
Finally, we have received the following poem written by Navven Nave Ravi, a former Nauru detainee. The poem is a shocking insight into the psychological trauma that has been inflicted upon the Nauru detainees – people whose only ‘crime’ was to seek a better life away from war, extreme poverty and strife.
I HATE MY SELF…!!!
Mentaly I am drained – yes
Spiritually I am feel dead…
Physically I am giving always…
Fake smile on my face
Because my lips can’t explain…the pain in my heart
I am loser… I hate my self
Day and each day…..a
Lettle bit more…. Yes I am
So depressed so useless…… I
Just want to go to sleep…
And never wake-up…..
You can’t possibility imagine
Exactly how much pain….surrounding my heart….
I am copping with horrible things…..
I am constantly feel-like
I am at war with my self-to
Copping each day…..
Over and over you lied me-it’s
Over and over makes more pain
Over and over I cried – then
Over and over I am tired and
Over and over I hate my self
Every single second I am passing
I hate my self……… lots
When I started to crying confront of my pain….
All the day’s I am broken…
I am alive behind the masks faces…..
It’s more suffer with loneliness
I hate myself that the things
You doing to me….. With
Your inhuman…… Power
That’s your politics… I lost myself….. I tell every one…
I am fine but reality I am dying
Every things I had it’s running
Away from my head…. I lay
In the bed for hours in the dark
Thinking about my future….but
It’s shut down completely…
I am so sad….. I hate my self
I want to sleep never ever wake up anymore