6 Jul 2011

Tensions rising inside Darwin detention centre

7:22 am on 6 July 2011

Refugee supporters in Australia warn that tensions are rising alarmingly inside the Darwin Immigration detention centre.

The Northern Territory Emergency Services has confirmed that an asylum seeker was taken from the detention centre to Royal Darwin hospital at about 10pm on Tuesday.

Refugee advocates say that five detainees have attempted suicide over the last week.

They say five men also sewed their lips together last week, or last weekend.

The ABC reports that incidents of self-harm started last week when Prime Minister Julia Gillard was visiting Darwin.

The Federal Immigration Department confirms that a small group of asylum seekers has engaged in self-harm.

It says all the detainees involved received appropriate medical attention following these incidents.