1 Apr 2014

Nauru defends local birth facilities

11:30 am on 1 April 2014

Nauru's government says demands by refugee advocates that pregnant women should not be sent to the Australian-run asylum seeker detention centre on Nauru are offensive to Nauruan women.

The home affairs minister, Charmaine Scotty, says claims that women should not have babies on the island make no sense given that almost every person who lives on Nauru was born there.

Ms Scotty says the comments are based on misinformation that is being intentionally spread to advance political agendas, and include false allegations that there are no qualified midwives.

She says pregnant women at the centre give birth at the country's hospital which has midwives, an obstetrician as well as a general paediatrician who supports neo natal care, with high-risk women being transferred to Australia.