Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Earth Science News .

U.S. lawyer defends Australian asylum seekers
by Staff Writers
Canberra, Australia (UPI) Apr 26, 2013

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

Former Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, defense lawyer Michael Mori wants greater access to people seeking asylum in Australian but kept in detention on the Pacific island of Nauru.

Mori, a retired U.S. Marines lieutenant colonel, represented former Guantanamo Bay inmate David Hicks for more than three years, resulting in Hicks being moved from Guantanamo Bay to serve his prison sentence in his native Australia.

In an exclusive interview with Australia's Fairfax Media group, Mori said the fate of asylum seekers on Nauru and that of Hicks are similar: Both are maligned in public opinion and they struggle to get proper legal representation.

His clients on Nauru are "almost incommunicado," Mori said.

"They've charged 10 people but there's not 10 lawyers on Nauru. There's no defense lawyers to handle the cases, so how are people supposed to get access to lawyers to advise them?"

Mori, 46, said politics must be put aside if people are to get a fair trial.

"Whether or not you agree with the process, the political situation, of the processing over in Nauru, you have to agree that people being detained should have access to legal help," Mori told Fairfax Media.

"I think that's the heart of it. You have to push the politics aside and remember, if someone's detained they need access to the law."

Mori moved to Melbourne last July after retiring from the Marines. He is working as legal consultant as part of the team from the firm Shine Lawyers defending the 10 asylum seekers in Nauru.

The Nauru detention center is part of Australia's solution to an increasing illegal immigrant problem.

Canberra has been struggling for more than a decade with housing and processing illegal immigrants wanting to claim asylum arriving by unseaworthy boats.

Many of the passengers pay hundreds of dollars to notorious people smugglers for the treacherous journey from Asian countries including Sri Lanka, Iran and Afghanistan.

The Australian government reached an agreement last year with the government of Nauru -- an island in the South Pacific with a population of just more than 9,000 -- to reopen an illegal immigrant processing center there in exchange for financial aid.

Nauru, a former British Colony called Pleasant Island, has been independent since 1968 but is under the protection of Australia.

In September, soon after the Nauru center opened, asylum seekers rioted, causing around $24,000 damage to facilities including kitchens and tents.

The Shine team is acting on behalf of the so-called "Nauru 10" who face riot and willful damage charges over the September riot.

The detainees will plead innocent, Fairfax reported.

In October, a court in Perth handed down a 14-year prison sentence to Ali Khorram Heydarkhani, 41, an Iranian-born Australian citizen and a self-confessed people smuggler whose illegal activities cost dozens of lives at sea.

Heydarkhani pleaded guilty to organizing five poorly maintained boats to travel from Indonesia to Australia from June 2010-January 2011, a report by the Australian Broadcasting Corp. said.

One vessel crashed into rocks in high seas yards from the shore of Christmas Island, killing 50 people in December 2010. The disaster was filmed by media whose clips showed people jumping into the sea amid bodies floating in the water.


Related Links
Bringing Order To A World Of Disasters
A world of storm and tempest
When the Earth Quakes

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Landslide kills 14 in Ecuador
Quito (AFP) April 24, 2013
A landslide swept into a village in northern Ecuador, burying homes and killing at least 14 people, authorities said Wednesday. "There were 14 people killed in a landslide in Tabete" civil defense reported on Twitter, of the town near the Colombian border. After days of heavy rain, the landslide buried homes in tonnes of earth and debris in the town located in Esmeraldas province, said M ... read more

U.S. lawyer defends Australian asylum seekers

Landslide kills 14 in Ecuador

Pakistan quake victims burn tyres at angry protests

Hong Kong searches for 6 missing crew after boat crash

US eases export rules on aerospace parts

MEADS Low Frequency Sensor Cues Multifunction Fire Control Radar in Test

Ontario Air Cadets Take Flight in Lockheed Martin's Prepar3D Simulation Software

Softening steel problem expands computer model applications

Rivers Act As 'Horizontal cooling towers'

New Caledonia bans shark fishing

New NASA Satellite Takes the Salton Sea's Temperature

Climate scientists say Asian monsoon forecasts could improve

Sea stalactites provide clues to origin of life

Chinese ship sinks off Antarctica: Chile

Age matters to Antarctic clams

An SwRI-led remote-sensing study quantifies permafrost degradation in Arctic Alaskan wetlands

Deep, Permeable Soils Buffer Impacts of Agricultural Fertilization on Streams and Rivers in Southern Amazon

Ecology, economy and management of an agro-industrial Amazon frontier

Double cropping helps Brazil develop

New studies explore mango's potential health-affirming properties

Measuring the hazards of global aftershock

Calculating tsunami risk for the US East Coast

A global murmur, then unusual silence

Superstorm Sandy shook the US

Nigeria amnesty panel says talks possible with Islamists

Scaled down US-Morocco war games resume: embassy

S.African leaders at odds on C.Africa troop re-deployment

France hands Timbuktu mission to Burkina Faso troops

Ancient skeletons reveal genetic 'history' of Europe's peoples

From mice to humans, comfort is being carried by mom

DNA study suggests human immunity to disease has ethnicity basis

Fascinating rhythm: The brain's 'slow waves'

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement