March 21, 2018

Australia Responsible for Dire Conditions of Refugees

14 November 2017, 01:20 | Taylor George

Asylum seekers sit on the ground as they refuse to leave the Manus Island detention center in Papua New Guinea

Asylum seekers sit on the ground as they refuse to leave the Manus Island detention center in Papua New Guinea

The camp inside a Manus Island navy base was declared closed October 31 based on the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court's ruling previous year that Australia's policy of housing asylum seekers there was unconstitutional.

"It is time for the New Zealand government to do more than offer to take 150 refugees from Manus or Nauru", she said.

But Ms Adern's criticism of Australia's handling of the refugee crisis on the island - which she has described as unacceptable - has prompted a warning from New Zealand's opposition for her to tread carefully.

"This is a strong relationship that we have with Australia, it's an important relationship but as I say, when there is information to update you on then I will", she said.

"I see the human face of this and I see the need and the role New Zealand needs to play".

New Zealand's prime minister says she has been in constant contact with her trans Tasman counterpart about an offer to resettle 150 refugees. I think it's clear that we don't see what's happening there as acceptable, that's why the offer's there'.

Ms Ardern hasn't revealed the content of the talks with Mr Turnbull, but said the fact they were continuing proved the urgency of the situation.

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"It continues to be the easiest option is to go through Australia given the screening that's already occurred of those refugees". I'm interested in the fastest route, ' she said.

Five officers are now standing against the fence next to the group.

Kurdish-Iranian detainee and journalist Behrouz Boochani told AFP on Tuesday that the detainees were going to dig another well, a day after police moved into the camp to puncture or remove tanks holding the refugees' remaining supplies of drinking water.

Police had complied with an order from the capital, Port Moresby, not to use force to move the migrants and take them to camps 30 minutes' drive away, Yapu said.

Rejecting United Nations calls to restore utilities to the camp, Papua New Guinea this week said it would "apprehend" those responsible for the stand-off when it forcibly evicted the men.

"Over the last few months they have traveled to East Lorengau on many occasions and never raised any concerns", Bishop said.

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