21 Feb 2014

Sydney University law professor slams asylum seeker policy as 'grotesque'

6:52 am on 21 February 2014

A law professor says it's almost certain the Australian Government will have to face a legal challenge over clashes at its detention centre on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island.

Sydney University Professor Mary Crock says that in her view Australia's asylum seeker policy of offshore detention is a grotesque breach of human rights law.

She says the asylum seekers are plainly Australia's responsibility and the Australian government has failed in its duty of protection and care.

"I'm sure that there will be a legal challenge. As day follows night somebody will bring an action. Again, the grounds on which that is done will be very interesting, I would've thought probably under tort law on the grounds of negligence and breach of a duty of care for these people."

Mary Crock says that if a case were to be brought, it would take a very long time.