26 May 2014

Nauru refugees may be sent to Cambodia

4:27 am on 26 May 2014

The Australian Refugee Council is concerned Cambodia may become a dumping ground for those granted refugee status in Nauru, but have nowhere else to go.

Last week, the first asylum seekers were granted refugee visas in Nauru and in the Australain detention centre in Papua New Guinea.

The refugee council's chief executive says Cambodia has a record of sending refugees back to their countries of origin, but he hopes that won't happen to any people resettled from Nauru.

He says the treatment of refugees living in Cambodia is very poor.

"They have a piece of paper that they're recognised as refugees but it hasn't translated into any residency permits, they don't actually have the right to seek employment, and they're living in appauling housing conditions."

Paul Power says Cambodia is one of the poorest countries in Asia, and wealthier nations are the best for resettling refugees.