News

Oct 31, 2017

What you need to know about Manus Island

Greens Senator Nick McKim, the only Australian politician on Manus to watch the detention centre close, calls it an "escalating humanitarian emergency".

Charlie Lewis — Journalist

Charlie Lewis

Journalist

Could Comcare end the Manus Island destruction?

Today, the Manus Island detention centre, which houses about 600 men intercepted attempting to enter Australia, officially closes. The water, food, and electricity are being cut off. Medication for the 88% of detainees found suffering from depression, anxiety or post traumatic stress disorder is no longer being handed out. There have been problems with the sewage for days. The staff are gone. Fearing violence from locals or the military, hundreds of men are refusing to leave, launching legal action, collecting rainwater and barricading themselves inside. The detention centre is to be converted to a Papua New Guinea military base — a notification from the PNG immigration and citizenship authority tells anyone choosing to stay will be liable for removal. 

4 comments

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4 thoughts on “What you need to know about Manus Island

  1. graybul

    Immigration Minister Dutton has an individual responsibility of “Duty of Care” for every detainee held on Manus. For him to wake up one morning; declare he no longer has any interest in or for those under his authority (every single man, woman, or child previously detained and incarcerated over years right through to the current 600 men left) and simply deny their existence beggars belief.

    Has the Australian Parliament no view, procedural legality, accountability for the Ministerial action / inaction that directly places all 600 men at immediate risk of their lives? Abandoned in a foreign land without rights, legal protections, means or sustenance; facing extreme hostility and open threat of violence. Through no fault of their own circumstance. Each and every one these men are abandoned. The host country has no place or responsibility for them. And the Minister who is totally responsible has determined to discard them as no longer needed to shore up his domestic political priorities. Every Australian is responsible for each detainee’s immediate safety and individual futures; for we deprived them of a future when they were forcibly incarcerated without charge, term or legal process.

    Why is the Australian Parliament silent . . . and will the Hon. Members remain silent?

  2. AR

    This is, or should be – were we living in a just, sane society, a governance crisis.
    Manus only exists because of government action – not just enabled by unethical & immoral bipartisanship – which has since been ruled illegal by the PNG judiciary.
    Ergo, those placed there by Australian government fiat are, ipso facto & de jure, the responsibility of the aforesaid government.
    Your call, Talcum.
    I can’t heaarrrr you!

  3. burnside

    Manus is a stark reminder of the dishonesty and hypocrisy of our politicians.
    When they call boat-people “illegal” they are lying: boat-people commit no offence by arriving in Australia, uninvited, seeking a safe place to live.
    When they say they are worried about people drowning in their attempt to reach safety they show their hypocrisy. If they are worried about people drowning, why do they punish the ones who don’t drown?

    1. klewso

      Political pawns (“Our harshness on refugees is harsher than yours!”?) and supposed “examples” against people smuggling – like hanging dead crows on a fence to deter others?
      “Stop the drownings” was an eventual acceptable aegis, settled on to hide their real ideology – after “children overboard” (the vilification of refugee intentions), “potential terrorists”, and just plain xenophobia-cum-supremacy?

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