Another suicide in Australian immigration prison camp
27 June 2018
On June 15, Fariborz Karami, a 26-year-old Kurdish Iranian refugee, took his own life inside his tent in the Australian detention facility on Nauru. His death is the direct result of the “border protection” regime, maintained by successive Australian governments, of turning away all refugee boats and detaining asylum seekers indefinitely on remote Pacific islands.
Karami’s is the twelfth preventable death since the previous Australian Labor government reopened the prison camps on Nauru and Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island in 2012, where refugees remain incarcerated under the Liberal-National government.
Karami had been imprisoned on Nauru for five years with his mother, Fazileh Mansour Beigi, and Ali, his 12-year-old brother. A popular individual amongst other detainees and described as gregarious and caring, he had married a short time before his death.
In the months leading up to his death, however, he had begun to withdraw under the weight of a hopeless situation. This was made worse when the Turnbull government cancelled, at the last minute, a medical transfer to Taiwan for his mother.
Two days before his death, Karami’s mother made a final appeal, begging for help for herself and her sons. She wrote to Canstruct International, a Brisbane-based company contracted by the Australian government to oversee and run the Nauru facility.
Beigi described the horrors she and her children have experienced in Nauru. “It’s close to five years that we are living in a dark tent which is filled with mould and germs,” she wrote. “My kids have developed skin problems. Due to the repetitive darkness of this life, my kids are depressed. I also am emotionally and physically in a fatal…