Thirteen refugees leave PNG for the US

| August 28, 2018 | Reply

Thirteen refugees flew from Port Moresby this morning, Tuesday 28 August, on their way to be resettled in the United States.

Included in the group being resettled are two Pakistanis, two Tamils, five Afghans, and four from Burma.

Some of them have been waiting in Port Moresby since being transferred from Manus Island in December 2017. More than forty refugees are still in Port Moresby waiting for resettlement.

But the pattern of rejection from the US continues. On 22 August, out of 22 who received notifications from the US resettlement agency, 16 were rejected, including all Iranians, Somalis and Sudanese in the group.

Meanwhile levels of mental distress are increasing on Manus Island. An Iraqi refugee doused himself with petrol in the East Lorengau Transit Accommodation compound. Quick action by other refugees prevented a calamity to the man and a risk of a major fire in the compound itself.

“For this refugee, there is a very immediate need to get him off Manus, so he can get the help he needs to recover from five years of hopelessness,” said Ian Rintoul, from the Refugee Action Coalition.

“But there is an urgent need to get everyone off Manus Island. Despite a court case in 2016, that found that detention on Manus Island was unlawful, refugees are still prisoners on the island.

“A Supreme Court judgement regarding the fate of the refugees affected by the 2016 finding is still pending. What we do know is that all the people on Manus need safety and security, that the US deal is not going to provide.

“The Australian government is unlawfully keeping them on Manus, when they should be free.”

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713

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