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Manus Island hunger strikes are a call to Australia’s conscience

Fiske, L., Kenny, M.A. and Procter, N. (2015) Manus Island hunger strikes are a call to Australia’s conscience. The Conversation, 19 January 2015 .

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Reports continue to emanate of escalating hunger strikes among asylum seekers at the Manus Island detention centre in protest at the length of their detention and their conditions.

The Australian government has taken a hardline stance. It is publicly refusing to negotiate with the protesting detainees. Last Friday, Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said:

My message today is very clear to the transferees on Manus and in other facilities: whilst there has been a change of minister, the absolute resolve of me as the new minister and of the government is to make sure that for those transferees they will never arrive in Australia.
The Abbott government’s response so far echoes that of previous governments, which have seen hunger strikes as manipulation or blackmail, to which “we” (Australians and the government) will not give in.

Publication Type: Non-refereed Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Law
Publisher: The Conversation Media Group
Copyright: The Author
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