36 "Light The Dark" Photos That Will Restore Your Faith In Humanity

On Sunday night, thousands of people around Australia held candlelit vigils to protest the inhumane treatment of asylum seekers. The photos will give you goosebumps.

Reza Barati was a 23-year-old asylum seeker from Iran. He arrived at Christmas Island last July, and was transferred to Manus Island in August. He was killed there on Monday.

Another 62 people were injured in the violent clashes at the detention centre on Manus Island.

1. On Sunday night at 8pm, thousands of Australians gathered to light candles in honour of Reza.

“Honouring Reza Barati in Brisbane”.


4. Amazing photos were uploaded to social media using the #LightTheDark hashtag.


Every candle a glimmer of hope. The Australia that could be. #LightTheDark

— Brad Chilcott (@bradchilcott)

Town Hall, Sydney, 8pm #LightTheDark @welcome2aussie @GetUp @LeilaDruery

— Brooke Eggleton (@Brookeggleton)

These kids get it #LightTheDark

— GetUp! (@GetUp)

“Reclaim compassion”.

9. As well as honouring Reza, many protested the government policy of sending asylum seekers who arrive by boat to offshore detention centres.

“#lightthedark Detention centres are unhealthy, inhumane, expensive, unnecessary and ultimately deadly. There are better alternatives for refugees.”


Grieving the death of asylum seeker Reza Berati and grieving the violent policies of our govt #lightthedark

— asha bee (@theashabee)

We stand united with the refugees on Manus Island and demand action from our government. #lightthedark

— Nick Bond (@bondnickbond)

#LightTheDark To remember those we have allowed to be harmed and to ensure it does not happen again #auspol #change

— Carolyn Pickering (@CLPickering)

Remembering Reza, offering hope & support to the thousands of asylum seekers imprisoned and turned away #LightTheDark

— Krista Recsei (@KRecsei)

14. Group vigils were held in major cities around Australia.

MT @luckytran Amazing what we can do when we come together Australia! #LighttheDark

— Amnesty Australia (@amnestyOz)

Arms raised and hearts united in Sydney. #LightTheDark

— GetUp! (@GetUp)

The Sydney Town Hall Square crowd for refugee compassion #lightthedark overflowed.

— Jane Salmon (@JSalmonupstream)

Thank you Sydney! 10,000 #lightthedark for 10,000 #asylum seekers in detention. We pledge to fight & end this cruelty


#LightTheDark Melb crowd of 5, 000 holding lit candles showing their support for Reza Berati and all #asylumseekers


Amazing. Great crowd in Brisbane tonight! RT @ohill8 #LightTheDark Brisbane

— GetUp! (@GetUp)

Lighting the Dark - Port Adelaide at the base of a very familiar lighthouse. #LightTheDark

— Peter Johnstone (@sem4peter)

21. It wasn’t just the large cities that got involved - smaller communities also took part.

#lightthedark in Hazelbrook, Blue Mountains- almost 100 community members shining a light @getup

— Amanda Carr (@amandayogaglow)

#newcastle #lightthedark My son, grandson of a refugee.

— Carol Duncan (@carolduncan)

#LightTheDark Kyneton Vic

— marisa monagle (@Rissoleone)

Small but beautiful gathering in Port Macquarie for #LightTheDark

— Anniepalooza (@Anniepalooza)

Bundeena residents #LightTheDark on Hordern's Beach.

— GetUp! (@GetUp)

26. Many who couldn’t make it to a gathering did something to #LightTheDark in their own way.

#LightTheDark #asylumseekers we love you, you are not alone, you will be free & safe, we will not let you down again

— Fiasco Fray (@fiascofray)

Not in my name #LightTheDark

— Kristy Gay (@_Destati_)

Australia was meant to be the safe place Reza was looking for. I am so ashamed. #LightTheDark #RIPRezaBerati

— Victoria Rollison (@Vic_Rollison)

#LightTheDark vigil near Cooma in memory of Reza Berati.

— GetUp! (@GetUp)

From our young family in Burwood. Australia can do better than this. #lightthedark

— Sara_M (@sara_maria_)

This gov doesnt reflect our family's values. We welcome asylum seekers into our country & into our home #LightTheDark

— Cara Wood (@CaraLevinson)

For you, Reza. May you find your peace. #LightTheDark

— Eliza Cussen (@ElizaCussen)

My coffee table tonight. #LightTheDark

— Bridget O'Flynn (@BridgetOFlynn)

"If nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do." #LightTheDark from Coonabarabran. We're failing.

— Stephen Turner (@SteveT_AU)

“My own small attempt to #lightthedark - the darkness appears to grow thicker every day with this government, which is why it is so important that we let them and the world know that this government does not speak for Australia; that we do not consent to this degrading, cruel system to push away those that come to us in their time of need.”

36. Even people around the world got involved.

#LightTheDark to pay respect to asylum seekers who have suffered under our watch. http://t.co/pRXBmu0A3K via @GetUp

— Katherine Wallace (@felloutofthesky)

It’s 10:54am in Stuttgart, but I’ve lit the candles for #RezaBarati. Hopefully out of his senseless death will come a change. #lightthedark

— Mike Stuchbery (@Mike__Stuchbery)

Out of a violent incident, #LightTheDark was a powerful message of compassion and hope.

In the darkest hour, I have finally seen hope. Thx to #LightTheDark tonight - you give me hope we can fight something other than tears.

— Kelly-lee Hickey (@kellyleehickey)

Reading the #LightTheDark hashtag gives me hope. So much love and compassion there.

— Fi-b (@fionahelen)

750 vigils organised in just 36 hours. A clear sign that Australians care. #LightTheDark

— GetUp! (@GetUp)

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Jenna Guillaume is Editor-at-Large for BuzzFeed and is based in Sydney.
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