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Update On Condition of Hunger-Strikers


Update On Condition of Hunger-Strikers

By Elaine Smith - Rural Australians for Refugees

Elaine Smith has been in contact via phone with the refugee detention camp on Nauru. Here is her account of the condition of those who called off their hunger-strike at 5pm last night.

I have received a number of phone calls tonight from Nauru. Arif Ruhani said at 5pm the hunger strike was suspended. They are in need of medical attention and so look forward to the arrival of a team that will be qualified to handle the seriousness of the medical problems in the camp, and will also be able to act independently of camp management. He calls on the humanitarian people of the world to help release them from detention.

All except Qurban (who, they say has gone mad) have been returned from the hospital, okay but not in good health "There is a little hope for us", they say. "We need to give DIMIA time to assess the new information."

They send a message of thanks to the Australian people who have worked so hard to help them.

They look forward to cases being opened, and they look forward to interpreters they approve of.

It is extraordinary that Australia should imprison desperate men women and children who have fled violence. It is amazing that we have imprisoned them in such a desolate place, well isolated from all view of the world. We are repeating our convict history, but this time we are doing it to people who have done no crime.

It is only now that some brave men have risked their lives, that the average Australian has even heard about Nauru.

They have suspended the protest in hope that they will, for once, get a fair hearing.

I hope we Australians can hear.

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