In the third and final installment of her series on asylum seeker accommodation in the Northern Territory, Pamela Curr takes a tour of the Darwin Airport Motel to visit the (approximately) 15o asylum seeker teenagers who reside there:
There are around 150 boys aged 14 to 17 currently locked up in the Darwin Airport Motel who have not left the building since April.
These boys are almost all Hazaras, a persecuted minority who are being killed and driven out of Afghanistan by the Taliban.
Many of these boys have seen their fathers and brothers killed. They have been forced to watch beheadings in their villages by the Taliban who know the value of terror as an agent of control. They have been hidden in the boots of cars and in trucks under animals and vegetables to get them to safety. They have left at the behest of mothers who tell them that having lost husbands and other sons that they must survive.
Many have been imprisoned in Indonesia where they suffered regular beatings and were locked in cells without food and water for days. They have many reasons why their nights are troubled and their days need to be filled with meaningful activity.
This is the front view of the Darwin Airport Lodge:
This is the back view: