14 May 2003

UNHCR says refugees on Nauru are still waiting for permanent resettlement

11:48 am on 14 May 2003

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees says it is waiting to hear back from Australia as to whether it will accept some of the refugees who remain on Nauru.

The UNHCR's Marissa Bandarangshi says her agency still has a group of 29 refugees on Nauru from the hundreds of asylum seekers that it processed alongside the Australians over the last 18 months.

She says 261 refugees from its case load have been found permanent homes but this last group is still waiting for resettlement offers.

"We have submitted half of those people to Australia and we are waiting on a response on that. The remaining people we are now looking at resubmitting them to a different country because the last country we submitted their cases to were unable to resettle them."

The UNHCR's Marissa Bandharangshi.

Australia's Immigration Department says a total of 439 people remain on Nauru and Manus, 51 of whom have been classified as refugees.