Hazara asylum seeker says he is being sent back to Afghanistan

A Hazara man has said he is set to be deported to from an Australian immigration detention centre after a lawyer failed to lodge an appeal for his refugee claim.

If the repatriation goes ahead, the 27-year-old man will be back to Afghanistan after seeking asylum in Australia.

The man told Guardian Australia he fled Afghanistan in 2012 and arrived on Christmas Island. He was refused a protection order shortly after and spent time in the West Australian detention centre Yongah Hill and in community detention.

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His claim for asylum was rejected and the rejection reaffirmed by the refugee review tribunal in early 2013, probablyat a cost to him of more than $1,600.

A request for ministerial intervention was also rejected that same year and he was granted a six-week visa in 2014 so he could appeal.

The man told Guardian Australia he paid a Victoria-based lawyer to submit the application but when he reported to immigration after the six weeks they told him nothing had been received.

“I paid him to do that and he didn’t do it. He just took the money,” the man said.

He was then sent to Darwin’s Wickham Point detention centre, where he had been for more than a year before learning he was to be deported.

“Immigration said they are going to send me back by force on Monday,” he told Guardian Australia.

“Then immigration are saying I can go back to Kabul but I don’t have anyone to support me in Kabul and also Kabul is not safe.”

He said legal aid lawyers had told him he has no legal option.

The asylum seeker came from a village in Ghazni province, where he says he was targeted by the Taliban and accused of being a spy. He says he was taken by the Taliban but escaped in Kabul.

Documents seen by Guardian Australia detail the man’s claim that he was targeted by the Taliban for being Hazara and of Shia Muslim faith, and for speaking out against the Taliban, and because they believed he was supporting foreigners and the government.

The documents also show that once he arrived in Australia his credibility was deemed questionable by Australian authorities and that, despite his fear of persecution in his home province as a Hazara man, they did not accept that his safety was at risk in Kabul.

His claim for protection was also rejected at least partly because the Australian official did not believe the Taliban could find out he’d spoken out against them, because it was unlikely the people he was speaking to would have informed on him.

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While Hazaras are targeted in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Australian legal precedent dictates some claims of persecution cannot rely on “situations of random violence” but must involve harassment specific to the individual.

In recent years, particularly since the young man’s appeal was rejected, Afghanistan’s security situation has deteriorated.

Afghanistan’s capital was rocked by , when a car bomb outside a security compound killed at least 30 people and injured hundreds. The attack marked the start of the Taliban’s yearly “spring offensive” and prompted fears this year could be one of the most violent since the regime lost power in 2011.

In March in Taliban factional fighting and in November both the Taliban and Isis claimed responsibility for , including two women and a child.

on the situation in Afghanistan for Hazara note the increasing violence and travel advisories warn: “No part of the country can be considered totally free from conflict-related violence.”

The department of immigration has been contacted for comment.

Source : theguardian[dot]com
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