A plan drafted in early 2016 outlines moves to coerce those recognised as refugees into leaving the Manus Island detention centre. Photo Credit: Ben Doherty for the Guardian

Revealed: year-long campaign to make conditions harsher for Manus refugees

Article in The Guardian
29 May, 2017

Appalling

“For more than a year, camp managers and security staff have waged a campaign to make Australia’s detention centre for refugees and asylum seekers on Manus Island as inhospitable as possible, leaked documents reveal.

A plan drafted in early 2016 outlines moves to coerce those recognised as refugees into leaving the detention centre and accepting resettlement in Papua New Guinea, while pushing asylum seekers to abandon their protection claims and return home…

The detention centre on the PNG island is one of Australia’s two offshore holding centres – along with the other on the Pacific island of Nauru – for asylum seekers and refugees…

Pressure is being increased upon asylum seekers to abandon their claims for protection – they are offered inducements of up to $30,000 if they agree to return home; while forced deportations of those found not to meet protection obligations are occurring with increasing frequency, with successive national groups – Nepalese, Lebanese, Vietnamese – targeted…

Inside the detention centre, despite the reforms to “open” the centre and the looming deadlines for its closure, the refugees held there say life is becoming, day-by-day, more repressive and inhospitable…

“They are trying to traumatise us and torture, to send us back to our home countries, and torturing us by their way, slowly, slowly they are killing us from minds and physically torturing us inside, the mark isn’t showing on our bodies, but we are dying. Our health is growing very worse, mentally sickness is going high level, everything is bad but they still put pressure on us.”

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