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Podcast episodeCover image for of #12 Flight from Manus

The Messenger

12 Flight from Manus  /  Migration

 

Aziz, in a hotel room facing onto Genève-Cornavin railway station — Photo: Michael Green

'I just feel like I left my soul back there, you know. Personally I'm here, but my heart is still in Manus.'

– Abdul Aziz Muhamat

Aziz is shortlisted for a major international prize, the Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders. The ceremony is in Geneva, Switzerland. Improbably, the prize’s organisers secretly arrange permission for him to leave Manus Island to attend the event. 

In this episode, Aziz finally – temporarily – escapes Papua New Guinea, five and a half years after the Australian government took him there against his will. But he has no proper passport or visa, and no idea what to expect.  

After years of exile and captivity, how will it feel to visit Switzerland – one of the richest countries in the world? And can Aziz make any difference for those who remain stuck on Manus Island and Nauru?

Transcript

A transcript of this episode is available here (PDF format).

Further reading 'Aziz: Flight from Manus' by Michael Green, Earshot, ABC Radio National, first broadcast 21 September 2019
The Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders

In this episode

Abdul Aziz Muhamat

Michael Green Michael Khambatta Hans Thoolen

Our theme music was composed by Raya Slavin. Music used in this episode is by Hour House (Mark Leacy and Sam Kenna).

More information

The Messenger is a co-production of Behind the Wire and the Wheeler Centre. This episode was originally commissioned and produced for the ABC Radio National programme, Earshot. It was produced by Michael Green. The supervising producer was Lyn Gallacher. The sound engineer was Melissa May.

Narration by Michael Green. Additional editing and mixing by Jon Tjhia.

Thank you

André Dao, Jon Tjhia, Hannah Reich, Bec Fary and Sophie Black. Thanks also to Camilla Chapman, Cecilia Cannon and Sean Cole, and to Behind the Wire's many participants and volunteers. Michael Green's travel to Papua New Guinea was supported by a grant from the Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund.

 
Podcast episodeCover image for of #13 A Stranger in Geneva

The Messenger

13 A Stranger in Geneva  /  Migration

Aziz in the snow, in Switzerland — Photo: Michael Green

'Hard to imagine. Start your life again. Have your own house, your own family.'

– Abdul Aziz Muhamat

Incredibly, Aziz is in Switzerland. And he’s just won a major international award for human rights defenders. 

He’s swamped with attention and adoration, briefings and business cards. But he is only allowed to be in Geneva for three short weeks. Then he has to return to Manus Island – back to the dangerous situation he’s being celebrated for campaigning against.

In this episode, we follow Aziz as he negotiates meetings with diplomats and speeches to the UN. He struggles with an unexpected, oppressive dilemma – should he board a plane back to his brothers on Manus, or seek yet another uncertain path to safety and freedom?

Transcript

A transcript of this episode is available here (PDF format).

Further reading 'Aziz: A Stranger in Geneva', produced by Michael Green for Earshot, ABC Radio National (first broadcast 28 September 2019) 'Flight from Manus' by Michael Green, ABC Radio National, 1 October 2019

In this episode

Abdul Aziz Muhamat

Michael Green Peggy Hicks Michael Khambatta

Our theme music was composed by Raya Slavin. Music used in this episode was produced by Hour House (Mark Leacy and Sam Kenna), except for 'I am the Changer', by Cotton Jones.

More information

The Messenger is a co-production of Behind the Wire and the Wheeler Centre. This episode was originally commissioned and produced for the ABC Radio National programme, Earshot. It was produced by Michael Green. The supervising producer was Lyn Gallacher. The sound engineer was Melissa May.

Narration by Michael Green. Additional editing and mixing by Jon Tjhia.

Thank you

André Dao, Jon Tjhia, Hannah Reich, Bec Fary and Sophie Black. Also Camilla Chapman, Cecilia Cannon and Sean Cole, and Behind the Wire's many participants and volunteers.

Anything and everything in Travel from across our archives.

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Portrait of George Dunford

George Dunford  /  Travel
http://www.georgedunford.com/

He’s since created stories about comics for Australian Bookseller & Publisher, Meanjin and Radio National’s The Book Show. As a Melbourne-based freelance writer he’s written for Lonely Planet, the Big Issue and the Age Good Food Guide*. His novel manuscript was recently longlisted for the CAL/Scribe Prize. Recently he created an iPhone app, Essential Melbourne.

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