Chauka, Please Tell us the Time

Dear Prime Minister,

The film 'Chauka, Please Tell Us the Time' was presented at the Sydney Film Festival on the weekend. The director of the film, Arash Kamali Sarvestani, was at the premier, but his collaborator, journalist Behrouz Boochani who filmed the footage on his mobile phone, was not at the premier because he was not granted a visa to travel from Papua New Guinea to Australia. His visa application was refused because he is in PNG without a visa because Australia forcibly removed him to PNG, against the law of PNG and against his own wishes and rights.

This article is an interview with Arash Kamali Sarvestani and Behrouz Boochani. In it they describe the process of film making behind the bars of detention. They discuss the creative process and their collaboration. They critique Australia's re-colonisation of PNG:

The politicians in Australia, they’re basically using the locals, they’re using the identity of the locals, to persecute refugees and asylum seekers. They’re treating the locals as colonial subjects. They’re using them. They look at them as worthless, as people who just do their dirty work. Just give them some money and they’ll do whatever they want to the people that Australia doesn’t want.
— Arash Kamali Sarvestani -

And reveal the use of time as a means of torture:

At the same time the Chauka bird is an identity symbol, it tells the time. At the same time it’s a symbol of torture for the asylum seekers. Sure, if we investigate the history of torture and all elements used for torture throughout the history of civilization the most impactful, the most dreadful one, is the one that uses the element of time. Time has no meaning anymore. Time is being stretched out, extended to such an extent that it’s boundless. There’s no beginning and there’s no end.
— Arash Kamali Sarvestani -

There is also a message for you, Mr Turnbull:

What you see is that those kids are on the other side of the fence and, inside the prison, Behrouz is singing a Kurdish folk song. They’re dancing. How more human can you get than that? Could Malcolm Turnbull watch this scene and sleep comfortably at night? Malcolm Turnbull is antagonising the children, he’s antagonising the detainees, but they’re dancing. I think every Australian needs to feel a shame at this point.

Close the camps and bring them here.