Last children leave Nauru, 19 refugees fly to the US

| February 27, 2019 | Reply

Nineteen Nauru refugees, including the last four refugee children, have left Nauru today, Wednesday 27 February, to be resettled in the US. This brings the total number of refugees from Nauru to be accepted by the US to just 342 (including 27 children).

As with yesterday’s flight from PNG, today’s Nauru flight to the US includes Iranians, 14 in all, including the two families with the last four children, among the 19 refugees leaving Nauru today. Iranians, Somalis, Sudanese, Iraqi and Syrians were among the nationalities that had been excluded from being accepted by the US for the last year.

Despite claims by Scott Morrison, during the debates over the medivac bill that all refugee children were off Nauru, it is only after the flight to the US today that the claim can be truthfully made.

The government is dragging its feet regarding medical transfers; despite the medivac transfer amendments being carried by Parliament, the bill is still not law. And recent moves by the government to appeal against some Federal Court decisions ordering medical transfers, puts the lie to any idea that the government has willingly moved sick children and their families off Nauru.

“The US deal will not provide resettlement places for the hundreds of refugees and asylum seekers left on Nauru. The almost six years of detention on Nauru has created a mental health crisis on the island, and the government still has no secure future for them. It is even saying settlement in New Zealand is less likely,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“Instead of rectifying the years of abuse, the government has resorted to the scare-mongering tactic of re-opening Christmas Island detention centre, while sick people are left without the help they need, while they waste millions of dollars.”

Rallies across the country on Palm Sunday, 14 April, will demand the immediate evacuation of Manus and Nauru, to bring all asylum seekers and refugees to Australia and the complete end to offshore detention.

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713

Category: Press releases

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