Persecution and death threats in their home countries lead many Afghanis, Sri Lankans and others to seek to enter Australia as refugees. Many attempt the often perilous journey to Australia by crowded boat. Many die in the attempt, but most are found to be genuine refugees.
We can assimilate these people without too much difficulty, though there must be practical limits. However the political situation in Australia, fanned by rabid right wing media, has often turned public opinion against these refugees.
But there is a human side to the story.
Two documentary videos ….
…. tell the human side of the refugee story.
Between the devil and the deep blue sea
Interviews with families in detention in Indonesia, some for almost a decade, and desperate to escape the suffering and murder which drove them out of their home countries. Riveting, gut-wrenching, shameful – especially when you learn the fate of these people at the end of the film.
Mary meets Mohammad
Looks at the other end of the question – what happens when refugees arrive in Australia and are sent to detention centres, often for several years, until they learn of their fate. The film follows local residents with varied responses to the establishment of a detention centre in their locality, and how an unlikely friendship formed.
These films are most relevant to Australians, but they’re well worth watching for anyone interested in people and wanting to relieve human suffering. I highly recommend them.
Between the devil and the deep blue sea: website or watch the trailer
Mary meets Mohammad: website, or watch the trailer
Photo Credit: DIAC Images via Compfight cc
I don’t know if I mentioned or not, but I’ve been visiting teen boys in the Pontville detention centre. Those who choose to dehumanise asylum seekers should spend some time with these children and listen to their stories.
I’ve had to suspend visits for a while because of time constraints, but it was an amazing experience.
Were you aware that ‘Mary Meets Mohammad’ is about the Pontville Centre? Perhaps you are in it??
Fear and prejudice are the same the world over. These films are worth watching as they apply to all societies facing the same issues.
Thanks for your comment. I found them both very emotional and convincing – one with a very heart-rending and devastating message, and one with more hope.