Australian government racism against refugees from war in Sudan

This is a video about Sudanese in Australia.

By Will Marshall in Australia:

Australian government resorts to anti-African witch hunt

12 October 2007

With a federal election imminent and opinion polls predicting a rout for the government, Australian Prime Minister John Howard is once again playing the race card, this time directed against Sudanese and other African immigrants. As he has done repeatedly over the past decade, Howard is deliberately encouraging divisive racist sentiment to divert attention from his own government’s responsibility for slashing of essential services and deepening social inequality.

Howard’s front-man this time is Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews. Andrews, who two months ago cut the quota for African refugees, made much publicised comments last week, blaming them for failing to “integrate” and “adjust into the Australian way of life”. Without any evidence whatsoever, Andrews declared that Africans were over-represented in “crime, the incidence of gangs and other undesirable activities”. He persisted even after Victorian Chief Commissioner Christine Nixon reported that Sudanese were actually under-represented in crime statistics.

Andrews’s comments come amid a filthy media campaign in Melbourne, in which even the tragic death of a 17-year-old Sudanese refugee, Liep Gony, has been cited as evidence of “African gangs”. Those charged with bashing the teenager to death are two non-Africans. In this poisonous climate, another African teenager, Anjang Gor, was violently attacked in Melbourne on Tuesday. Andrews used an assault on a Melbourne detective on Thursday, allegedly by Sudanese youth following Gony’s funeral, to further inflame tensions, by again highlighting violence involving the Sudanese community.

Andrews has denied that his comments and actions are racist. But singling out and discriminating against any segment of the population on the basis of skin colour and country of origin constitutes a classic case of racism. Andrews has chosen to victimise one of the most oppressed and vulnerable segments of the working class: Africans refugees forced to flee war, political persecution and deprivation. Andrews may be cautious with his words, but there is no doubt that he is encouraging an anti-African witch hunt.

Sudanese Community Association of Australia president Samuel Kuot said Andrews’s remarks had inflamed feelings against African immigrants.

This shows exactly how much Rightist politicians’ crocodile tears about the victims of the violence in Darfur, Sudan are worth.

See also here.

Australia: Police attack African youth at public housing estate: here.

Australia: Rudd government modifies immigration detention regime: here.

No payout for ‘stolen’ Aborigines: here.

Australian media attacks Germaine Greer over essay on Aboriginal violence: here.

Darfur and Congo: here.

14 thoughts on “Australian government racism against refugees from war in Sudan

  1. The Politics of Immigration
    Questions and Answers
    By Jane Guskin and David L. Wilson

    The Politics of Immigration,Questions and Answers

    “We desperately need to put aside false information about immigrants, to see them as we see ourselves with honesty and compassion. This book gives powerful meaning to the slogan ‘No Human Being is Illegal.’ I hope it will be widely read.” —HOWARD ZINN, author of A People’s History of the United States

    “As the immigrant rights movement grows in size and energy, we need quick facts and deep history. This book gives us both.” —AARTI SHANANI, co-founder, Families for Freedom

    As the immigrant rights movement continues to assert itself in greater numbers and impact, taking it’s place on the stage of great historical movements, the reaction of those who benefit from keeping immigrants and all workers down intensify their propaganda. This book is a great antidote to right-wing propaganda. With convincing arguments and hard facts it sweeps away the lies and gives ammunition to the struggle to raise the living standard of immigrant workers and all workers by tearing down the arguments used to divide immigrants from the rest of the working class.

    Softcover, Notes, Index, 173pp


  2. Sudan: The indictment of al-Bashir

    2 August 2008

    Below is a July 20 statement from the Sudanese Communist Party, which is waging a struggle for democracy and justice against the current regime. It is reprinted from

    The inclusion of the name of the President of the Republic of the Sudan, Omar Hassan al-Bashir, among those wanted for justice by the International Criminal Court (ICC) increases the complications engulfing the crisis in Sudan.

    Despite the fact that such procedures were already in place and expected since the court’s establishment, and this last step of naming al-Bashir was preceded by a similar step indicting two prominent figures in the government in February 2007, the Sudanese government was ill-prepared legally and politically to react.

    It is well known, generally accepted and cannot be hidden that what is going on in Darfur is a human catastrophe. We, the Sudanese Communist Party, reiterate what we have already declared — that the government bears full responsibility for what is happening in Darfur, since its own policies have led to the aggravation of the tragedy.

    We continue to demand, together with others, the investigation into the crimes committed in Darfur, and to bring those responsible to justice regardless of their position in the state hierarchy.

    We consider that the only way out of this crisis is the implementation of a comprehensive series of measures. First, there needs to be a doubling of efforts to reach a comprehensive and just solution to the problem of Darfur. A solution is needed that responds to the demands of the people and paves the way for dealing with the consequences of the problem and its tragic results.

    This includes the provision of justice to deal with all crimes committed against the people in Darfur. Any serious confrontation to solve this problem must be based on the participation of all armed movements of Darfur without exception.

    Other Darfurian organisations, leaders, representatives of local administrations and representatives of civil organisations should be allowed to participate on equal footing. In addition, all national parties, especially those of the opposition, should participate on an equal footing.

    This initiative should come as a result of collective efforts through a national mechanism that will be responsible for the preparations as well as the holding of the national event. It will be entrusted with full responsibility, including to contact the Darfurian movements and neighbouring countries.

    Second, there is the need to speed up the implementation of the details related to the democratic transformation of the country without delay, as well as to fully implement all agreements reached between the government and other parties.

    This should be done under the supervision of a national mechanism with the participation of all interested organisations and parties on an equal footing. The credibility and the seriousness with which these issues will be tackled, will help to unify the internal front and can be used to convince the international public opinion of the seriousness and readiness of the Sudanese people to solve their own problems.

    Third, the solution of this crisis cannot be achieved by escalating confrontation with the international community, through the organisation of demonstrations to denounce the ICC and its main prosecutors. Rather there needs to be a national approach based on a legal response to the demands and cooperation with the ICC as well as utilisation of multifaceted relations with the international community to reach an understanding that will pave the way for achieving an acceptable just solution — capable of strengthening peace, security and stability in Darfur and the country.


  3. U.S. backs genocidal general for Darfur command
    In February, a Spanish judge charged Karenzi and 39 other Rwandan officials with the mass killings of Rwandan civilians and of several Spanish and Canadian missionaries and relief workers. Nevertheless, the United States, Britain and Rwanda have urged U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to renew Karenzi’s contract when it expires next month.


  4. Sudan: ICC indictment of Omar al-Bashir — justice or a poisoned

    By Steven Fake and Kevin Funk
    March 21, 2009 — After an hour and a half of walking under the intense
    Sudanese sun, armed with crude maps printed from the internet, we paused
    before a field of rubble in an industrial area of North Khartoum. Two
    teenagers sat on the porch in front of the still-partially standing
    building, conversing and watching the world go by in this gritty, dusty
    area of the Sudanese capital.
    “Al-Shifa?”, we mustered as a question, the name of the massive
    pharmaceutical plant that stood on this site until just over a decade
    ago. They nodded. “Bill Clinton”, we responded, pointing to the ruins of
    the facility that his administration bombed in 1998. The two boys
    chuckled. Just over a decade after the US bombing of al-Shifa, on March
    4 of this year, a different leader — Sudanese head of state Omar
    al-Bashir — was indicted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for
    war crimes and crimes against humanity.

    * Read more


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