A Series of Boats 2e - Agrabinta Beach


A Fatal Sequence: The Agrabinta sinking

[imagecaption] Hussein’s Homecoming, SBS Dateline, 2013. [/imagecaption]


Nearly two years after the loss of the Barokah, at the end of September 2013, at least fifty more people drowned off the coast of Java near Agrabinta beach, on a boat bound for Christmas Island. A large proportion of them were children. There are discrepancies in the accounts of when Australian authorities were first contacted about the boat in trouble; however what is clear is that AMSA (Australia) unsuccessfully attempted to transfer coordination of the rescue effort to BASARNAS (Indonesia). The boat subsequently went into distress resulting in a significant loss of lives. This was the first known fatal crossing under the Coalition government elected earlier that month.

‘No one should take that risk. Everyone must know that Australia does not want to welcome anyone.’ 

Hussein Khoder, survivor of boat sinking, lost his wife and eight children

One man, Hussein Khoder, lost his wife and all of his eight children when the boat sank. The sentiments he expressed on his return to his village in Lebanon could be said to represent the success of Australia’s sinister ‘deterrence’ policy.


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