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Amnesty International condemns the handling of Manus Island refugees

10 November 2017

Posted in: Pacific Radio News,

By Ruci Farrell -

Human rights advocacy organisation Amnesty International has condemned the degrading way 600 refugees have been treated on Manus Island.

This week Papua New Guinea's Supreme Court ordered the withdrawal of all essential services to the detention centre including food and water.

Detainees on Manus Island, PNG. Photo/ Twitter - Asher Wolf.

Both the PNG and Australian Governments agreed to close the detention centre and resettle the refugees and asylum seekers in the nearby city of Lorengau.

Many detainees are refusing to do so claiming they'll be attacked by local residents.

Australia will not accept resettlement in their country and neither will PNG.

New Zealand's Amnesty International Executive Director Grant Bayldon says it's time to find permanent homes for the Manus Island refugees, who have been confined to the detention centre for four years.

"What we need to see is this issue resolved on two levels: the first is the immediate urgent needs of the men on Manus," he says. "They've had water and food and power and medical supplies cut off to the detention centre and secondly they need a long-term solution."

Bayldon says they need to be settled somewhere permanent.

Earlier this week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern met with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and offered to take on 150 refugees from Manus Island.

Photo/ Rural Australians for Refugees.