New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern slams 'unacceptable' Manus Island situation


New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern slams 'unacceptable' Manus Island situation

The men have been warned they would be moved by force in a two-page notice signed by the Papua New Guinea Immigration and Citizenship Service Authority on Thursday with a deadline to leave on Saturday.

The PNG Supreme Court rejected an application by one of the men to restore services on Tuesday, despite pleas from the United Nations to make food, water, medical supplies and power available.

Al Jazeera's Mereana Hond reports.

"Our advice to them is that common sense must prevail", Manus Police Commander David Yapu said on Monday.

Refugees have refused to leave the Australian-run facility at Manus Island that officially closed on October 31, fearing locals near replacement accommodation located at Lorengu will attack them. Behrouz Boochani, a Kurdish journalist from Iran who has been detained on Manus island for more than four years, said on Twitter that workers had begun that task.

"What Australia is doing is inhumane, and that is why we are here locking down the Australian high commission".

"The people on Manus need our help, they have committed no crime and shouldn't be locked up for exercising their right to seek asylum", said Emma Cullen, spokesperson for Peace Action Wellington.

Ms Ardern will be pressing Mr Turnbull again to accept New Zealand's offer to take 150 refugees from both Manus Island and Nauru. It says boat arrivals will never enter Australia, even if they are found to be refugees, as this would encourage people smugglers in Asia.

Ardern again reiterated New Zealand's desire to resettle 150 of the men now held in Australia's offshore detention centres despite Malcolm Turnbull turning down her offer a week prior.

One of Malcolm Turnbull's Ministers Matt Canavan has described it as a publicity stunt by Jacinda Ardern.

Activists have chained themselves to the gates of the Australian high commission in Wellington to highlight the plight of refugees and asylum-seekers on Manus Island. "No matter what label you put on it there is absolute need and there is harm being done", she said.

New Zealand won't pursue a deal directly with Papua New Guinea, despite Foreign Minister Winston Peters spotted holding talks with PNG's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill.

'I see the human face of this and I see the need and the role New Zealand needs to play. "I think it's clear that we don't think what's happening there is acceptable, that's why the offer is there".



© 2015 Leader Call. All Rights reserved.