Tag: Asylum Seekers

The Unbearable Weight of Staying

On the paradoxical semantic ambivalence at the root of the unrooted concept ‘host’ On Wednesday 22nd June 2016, during Refugee Week, Adbul Rahman Haroun was sentenced to nine months in prison under the Malicious Damage Act 1861, prosecuted for ‘dangerous obstruction’ of traffic. This ‘obstruction’ of which it speaks concerns the evasion of high speed…

Australians overseas are calling for international protests against mandatory detention of asylum seekers

For decades Australia has been the subject of international institutional condemnation that has focused on Australia’s policies of mandatory detention and off-shore processing of asylum seekers. In 2002 in the aftermath of Tampa, SIEV X, the spurious ‘children overboard’ allegations and beginning of the ‘Pacific Solution,’ the UN High Commission for Refugees articulated concern about…

A Walk in Yarl’s Wood

Yarl’s Wood is not a typ­ical English wood. Next to it is Yarl’s Wood de­ten­tion centre, a prison where people can be kept for years without trial. On a fine winter’s day, the first fine day after weeks of storms and rain, I went for a walk in the country. I found myself in a…

Racism as Excessive Legalism

Ex­cessive leg­ality can make the ra­cial­ised live in a world that has been slowed down, made dys­func­tional and even un­bear­able.We rightly celebrate that we live in a society where law and order prevail. The capacity to follow established rules allows for the smooth operation of the many necessary transactions that make up our everyday life.…

Guantanamo is still there … and the number of Guantanomos is multiplying.

When it comes to dis­reg­arding human rights and in­ter­na­tional legal ob­lig­a­tions, Guantanamo is easily matched by the 400 mi­grant de­ten­tion centres across Europe.One of the reasons why President Obama’s mandate has fallen many miles short of expectations is his clear lack of will — let’s dispense with euphemisms — to deliver his promise to close…

The Alien Body in Contemporary Netherlands: Incarceration and Force-feeding of Asylum Seekers

On 22 May 2013, the Dutch State Sec­ret­ary of Secur­ity and Justice and Min­is­ter for Migra­tion offered the House of Rep­res­ent­at­ives a memor­andum issued by the Coun­cil of State con­cern­ing ‘the options to admin­is­ter food and drink to an alien in deten­tion who is on hun­ger and/​or thirst strike, against his will.’ This essay sets out to unpack the main premises of these recom­mend­a­tions in the frame­work of biopol­it­ics, its colo­nial her­it­age and con­tem­por­ary deploy­ment in the Neth­er­lands. Whilst under­stood in a his­tor­ical con­tinuum, this little doc­u­ment gains rel­ev­ance as it rep­res­ents a sig­ni­fic­ant step over the threshold of the human …

Wanted For Love, But Not Here: The Travelling Rights of African LGBT Activists

Wanted for Love

In the Netherlands, the attempt by the “Wanted for Love” campaign to support LGBT activists in Africa renders “Africa” the “homophobic Other” of Dutch homonationalism. One of the dangers of awareness campaigns centred on social media is that they risk being online popularity contests. The [Dutch] national “Wanted For Love” campaign—a collaborative initiative of Hivos…

Against Colonial Rubbishing

Alwy Fadhel "Psychosis" | www.therefugeeartporject.com

Exterm­in­at­ing people by ‘rub­bish­ing them’ is always less dra­matic than when it is done through mas­sacres. As my facebook friends know, I take my status updates seriously. This does not mean that I only treat serious topics, or that I take myself overly seriously. Indeed I can be very frivolous and I always maintain a…

Human Rights or a Bill of Rights?

The only pro­gress­ive legal step is to intro­duce social and eco­nomic rights into UK law The debate over the future of the Human Rights Act (‘HRA’) has been somewhat surreal. The Labour position is schizophrenic. Labour introduced the Act but was justifiably accused of violating most of its principles in its obsession with security. But…

Exception, Precariousness, Power & Authority: irregular migrants in Australian law (Pt. 2)

<<< Part I State of exception, resurgent sovereignty? The Australian government has attempted to assert that the entire RSA process is an exercise of non-statutory executive power and as such, status assessors and independent reviewers are under no obligation to afford an applicant procedural fairness or to decide applications according to existing law. However late…

This boat was stopped

At least 28 Iranian and Iraqi asylum-seekers drowned yesterday within sight of the Australian territory they were aiming for. The media keeps emphasizing that there were “women and children” on board. If they were all men, would we not need to feel bad about it? is there a universal innocence about women and children that…