Australia stops asylum seeker transfer to Manus
A refugee advocacy group says the Australian government's decision to not send asylum seekers to Papua New Guinea's Manus island is no surprise.
The Refugee Action Coalition says the Australian government's decision to not send asylum seekers to Papua New Guinea's Manus island is no surprise.
Immigration Scott Morrison has revoked the direction to send male asylum seekers to Australia's offshore processing centre on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island, instead ordering them to Nauru.
The only people exempt are asylum seekers who are flown to Australia from PNG for medical reasons.
The Coalition's Ian Rintoul told Moera Tuilaepa-Taylor that Mr Morrison's announcement was nothing new to him.
The Manus centre's operations has faced strong criticism since Iranian asylum seeker Reza Berati was killed and scores of others injured during a violent riot in February.
It has also experienced significant delays in processing asylum seekers.
While 179 asylum seekers have been now settled on Nauru, not one asylum seeker has yet been resettled in PNG.
IAN RINTOUL: We already knew that since the killing of Reza Berati in February that no one had been transferred from Christmas Island to Manus island since February, so the announcement, which was actually made in July but has only just become public was really a confirmation of what was already happening. Somewhere the Immigration Department had already decided that no more people were going to be transferred to Manus Island.
MOERA TUILAEPA-TAYLOR: Do you know when the last transfer was made?
IR: No, it would probably be maybe January this year, about a month of so before Reza was killed.
MTT: So now that there will be no more asylum seekers sent to Manus - what about the asylum seekers there?
IR: That's a very serious issue. We now have one of the asylum seekers from Manus who has transferred to Brisbane with septicemia is now brain dead, and his life support system will most likely be turned off. So the physical conditions and the medical conditions of people on Manus island are worse than appalling and there is the medical attention is negligent and insufficient. It's also become clear that the PNG Minister who has the final decision about whether people do get refugee determinations, there's now 50 or 60 that are on his desk and he has made no decision about it and there still is no PNG law to allow the Minister to recognise anyone as a refugee let alone make arrangements for them to be resettled in PNG. So there's a very, very big question over Manus Island."
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