The Sudanese refugee, Abdul Aziz Muhamat, who spent 5 years in the Australian detention center on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea, has been presented with the 2019 Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders in Geneva, Switzerland, for exposing the very cruel asylum seeker policy of the Australian Government.
In his acceptance speech, Muhamat recalls how he was locked in a cage, “like an animal”, in a democratic country. He also mentions how authorities on Manus Island replace the names and identities of refugees with numbers. Unless they can quote their numbers, refugees on the island are denied potable water, food, and medical access.
In his speech, an emotional Mahmut also acknowledged the plight of refugees around the world and their struggles for their rights.