The curious story of Amir Taghinia [UPDATED] #Manus #Canada #Australia #refugees

“I was on Manus Island for nearly 5 years – 4 and a half, and I started looking to find a country to get resettled.

I basically contacted more than 5 or six different countries, or maybe more than that, and I was basically not getting any answers, and I finally found out that Canada is doing a private sponsorship.

I got in contact with Canadian immigration and I submitted an application, and I got in contact with my Canadian friends and they helped me a lot, and they helped me with the application to be processed, and I was finally resettled in Canada as a Canadian.”

[Amir Taghinia emerges to change his story about how he got to Canada, while pro-"deterrence" propagandist Pats Karvelas pretends the entire PNG-Australia indefinite detention and exile arrangement isn't illegal, and "resettlement" deals aren't fraudulent - 12 March 2017 -]

On July 19, 2013 Australia's "Labor" Prime Minister Kevin "lurch to the right on asylum seekers" Rudd, having been re-installed by the ALP Machiavelli Bill Shorten, announced the "PNG Deal" under which no refugees arriving by boat to Australia would ever - never, ever - be allowed to live in Australia.

One of the victims of that policy was a refugee named Amir Taghinia.

Amir Taghinia first appeared on Twitter in July 2017.

He tweeted from Australia's refugee concentration camp on Manus Island in PNG.

His first tweet was on 22 July 2017 and included a story from the ABC about the "closure" of the Manus camp.

It read: "Following the closure of #Manus Island Detention Center, detainees are becoming homeless within the center itelf."

The well known detainee Behrouz Boochani has long been prominent and outspoken on both social and establishment media, and has been a true advocate for his fellow detainees.

Amir Taghinia was less prominent until recently.

On Monday 6 November 2017 there was a story about a Manus detainee (Amir) who had managed to find a home in Canada and was actually already there!

The piece was on Australia's ABC TV current affairs show "7.30 Report".

"WTF?" would be an understatement of my reaction!

Following the issue so closely, how could I not have heard anything about this? Canada? What, when, where, why, how!

It was especially strange because, as a follower of his tweets, he had as recently as 3 November been tweeting as if he was still in the Manus concentration camp.

He was Tweeting pictures and videos and commentary about the conditions suffered by the illegally held detainees.

There was no mention at all of his possible or impending good news. Which could be explained perhaps by concern not to jeopardise a delicate process.

In any case, even on 6 November his Twitter profile still described him as a Manus detainee, maybe an oversight. It was changed a day or so later to reflect his good fortune as being now "former".

The ABC story and interview on 6 November said of Amir: "Until 18 days ago, Amir Taghinia was one of those Manus detainees. He was given refuge by the Canadian government and now lives in Vancouver."

It also said that the whole process had taken 22 months and that Amir had been a survivor of a refugee boat that had sunk on its way to Australia.

18 days prior to 6 November would be about 19 October.

On 19 October Amir was tweeting congratulations to the new Labour NZ Prime Minister Ardern. (The "7:30" transcript omits quite a lot of material that was in the originally broadcast report - such as Amir's story of meeting the daughter of his sponsors when she was a 'health worker' on Manus, and how his 'friends' in Australia suggested he find a Canadian sponsor and helped him locate that person - Chelsea Taylor).

A quick search found that there had been an earlier story about Amir's good fortune. This one was on Canada's "CBC" and was dated 3 November 2017.

Completely missed by all Australian establishment media. It said, in part: "Taghinia has been in Canada just four days, after spending over four years detained on remote Manus Island, which is part of Papua New Guinea.

A sponsor group of about a dozen Coquitlam residents started the process to bring him to Canada in 2015, a few months after the Taylors' daughter, Chelsea, had met him while administering immunizations to Manus Island detainees.

Taghinia was first sent there in July of 2013 after being rescued from a sinking boat alongside dozens of other asylum seekers who were trying to get to Australia."

Four days prior to 3 November would be no later than 31 October.

Another ABC report, this time from a radio interview by Glen Bartholomew, which was broadcast on the morning of 31 October includes this introduction: "ABC NewsRadio's Glen Bartholomew speaks to Iranian refugee, Amir Tahginia, who has been detained on Manus Island for the past four years."

Again, the suggestion is that Amir is still on Manus Island.

However, late in the interview, there is this interesting exchange:

GB: ...You're now in Port Moresby, having spent the last four years in the Manus centre. You've applied to be accepted under the US/Australia resettlement deal, where's that up to, what's the status of that for you now?

AT: Well I have been interviewed for three times now, and I have been told that I'm going to get the results and I don't know what's going to happen. It's just a waiting game.

Except, Amir had a very good idea of "what's going to happen".

On 31 October Amir was in Canada.

Maybe the interview was pre-recorded, but even so he is obviously being deceptive - with the willing assistance of the ABC apparently. It has been repeatedly stated that the "US Deal" is not available to refugees who chose to resettle in PNG. Refugees are not allowed to leave Manus except under exceptional circumstances. There is no explanation of why Amir would be in Port Moresby.

Something about this whole story stinks. Especially the ABC's part in it.

The fact that the ABC has edited out the part of the story about Amir's "Australian friends" from both the video and transcript of the "7.30 Report" is unexplained.

Interestingly, none of Amir's former fellow-detainees who are active on Twitter have posted anything about him or this amazing turn of events.

A curious story indeed.

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