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Refugee Behrouz Boochani free in New Zealand after years of detention in PNG


Saturday 16 May 2020, by siawi3


Refugee Behrouz Boochani free in New Zealand after years of detention in PNG

•18 nov. 2019

ABC News (Australia)

Seen by many as the voice of asylum seekers held in off-shore detention, the refugee and author Behrouz Boochani has been allowed to travel to New Zealand to speak at a literary festival. He isn’t ruling out claiming asylum there, which could create political tension, as Australia has long rejected the New Zealand’s offer to resettle refugees.

Video here 5.45



Behrouz Boochani overstays 30-day visa in New Zealand

Behrouz Boochani poses for a photo in Christchurch, New Zealand. Source: AAP

Behrouz Boochani was on a temporary 30-day visa in New Zealand for a speaking engagement.

Updated Updated 20/12/2019

Refugee and writer Behrouz Boochani has overstayed his visa in New Zealand, according to at least one official and the man’s lawyer, in a move that could fuel diplomatic tensions with Australia.

Mr Boochani travelled from Papua New Guinea in November on a temporary one-month visa to speak about his book at a literary festival.

He previously spent six years against his will in Australian offshore detention on PNG’s Manus Island.

Photo: Behrouz Boochani has overstayed his visa in New Zealand.

Ben Lomai, a lawyer in PNG who has been acting for Mr Boochani and hundreds of other refugees, told The Associated Press this week that Mr Boochani had not returned to PNG.

He said Mr Boochani would be put back in detention if he did return.

“The opportunity for his future would be very bleak,” Mr Lomai said.

Behrouz Boochani has lashed Labor over its ’shameful’ response to news he has arrived in New Zealand.
’You exiled me to Manus’: Behrouz Boochani lashes Labor’s ’shameful’ response to NZ arrival

A New Zealand government official, who was not authorised to speak publicly about the situation but was in a position to know, told the AP Mr Boochani had remained in Christchurch after his visa expired.

Mr Boochani has kept a low profile since his 29 November speaking engagement at the Word Christchurch festival and has not publicly stated his plans. Many people assume he will seek asylum in New Zealand.

Maori Iwi Ngai Tahu greets Behrouz Boochani at Christchurch airport.
Kurdish refugee and writer Behrouz Boochani gets warm welcome in NZ

Australian Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has vowed that Mr Boochani will never be allowed to enter Australia, even if New Zealand ends up granting him asylum.

That would create an unusual situation, because typically New Zealanders and Australians are free to live and work in both countries under a mutual agreement.