#Repost @davidmauricesmith 👉
The agreement between the Obama administration and the Australian government to have the US resettle 1250 asylum seekers currently detained by the Australian government in offshore detention centres appears to be disintegrating. Trump referred to the agreement as a “Dumb Deal” and labeled the asylum seekers as “illegal immigrants”. Frustrating. However by targeting Trump for rejecting the deal we glaze over the real issue: why is Australia handing off it’s own responsibility to assist asylum seekers to another country, and in exchange for what? These are human lives, not bargaining chips. It is Australia's responsibility to settle these people if their claims are accepted, not America's. As a signatory of the 1951 Refugee Convention Australia has a responsibility to not "expel or return a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where his life or freedom would be threatened on account of his race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion”. It will always be the most vulnerable (in this instance children, women and men who are fleeing for their lives) that suffer in political arm wrestling like this.
Caption: Refugee Adelrahim Adam from Khartoum, Sudan shows the scars he gained from 29 months in prison after being detained as a political dissident and being accused of being a spy. His wife was also killed because of his political beliefs and he has been stuck in Indonesia for one year since fleeing Sudan, his passage to Australia blocked with the “Stop the Boats” policy preventing asylum seekers from reaching the country. June 17, 2014. David Maurice Smith/@oculi. #asylumseekers #australia #stoptheboats #photography #oculicollective