9 Christian Leaders Arrested in Australia for Protesting Deportation of Refugees

Amanda Casanova | Religion Today Contributing Writer | Wednesday, February 17, 2016

9 Christian Leaders Arrested in Australia for Protesting Deportation of Refugees


Nine Australian Christian leaders were arrested after hosting a prayer vigil at the Minister for Justice office.

 

According to ChristianToday.com, the nine leaders, part of Love Makes A Way, had been protesting the deportation of more than 260 people. The deportees were sent to detention camps in Nauru.

 

Most of the people had been seeking asylum in Australia and medical treatment. About 30 of the 267 deportees are babies born in Australia to refugee mothers.

 

But Australia has worked hard to deter refugees. In response, supporters of refugees have created the hashtag #letthemstay. 

 

"No-one should be in detention on Nauru, where there is no functioning hospital – but it would be particularly cruel to rip children out of classrooms and send away these 37 babies born on Australian soil," said Love Makes a Way spokesperson Kate Leaney.

 

The Christian leaders said they occupied the office to “pray and to appeal to (Justice Minister Michael) Keenan” so that “he might stand for the freedom from oppression for people seeking asylum on our shores.

 

Some 10 churches have offered to take in the asylum seekers in hopes that the Australian government will release the deported asylum seekers.

 

"We offer this refuge because there is irrefutable evidence from health and legal experts that the circumstances asylum seekers, including children, would face if sent back to Nauru are tantamount to state sanctioned abuse,” said Peter Catt, the Anglican Dean of Brisbane.

 

 

Publication date: February 17, 2016

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