24 Feb 2014

Australia releases report into 2013 Nauru asylum seeker riot

2:45 pm on 24 February 2014

An Australian government review of a riot at the Nauru asylum seeker camp last July says it was caused by a number of factors.

An estimated 60 million US dollars of damage was caused to the camp and 153 asylum seekers were charged with rioting and wilful damage.

Don Wiseman has more:

"The review, done by former Queensland director of correctional services, Keith Hamburger, who garnered his information from the Australia and Nauru governments and the people running the camp, says the haste with which the camp was established in 2012 compromised the safety and security of facility. He says there was a rising tide of anger and resentment among the asylum seekers over the lack of progress in refugee status assessments and fears legal assistance was to stop. Mr Hamburger says there were ambiguities in the camp's governance structure and a lack of decisive operational leadership. He wants to see clear protocols defining the duty of care both countries have to inmates and staff, new protocols on security and crisis response, clarification of the powers the security firm and Nauru police can apply and improved communication lines with the asylum seekers. But Mr Hamburger makes no call on the continued withholding of refugee status reports from the inmates - none of which, another eight months on, have been made public."