30 Nov 2017

Deportation fears for arrested Manus Island men

12:03 pm on 30 November 2017

Refugees on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island say two Pakistani asylum seekers have been arrested for deportation.

The 119th daily protest on Manus Island, West Lorengau centre, 29-11-17

The 119th daily protest on Manus Island, West Lorengau centre, 29-11-17 Photo: supplied

They said the men were taken yesterday from one of the new refugee facilities on the island, Hillside Haus.

Police in five vehicles and two cars carrying staff from the PNG immigration department arrived at the facility last night to apprehend the men.

About 150 asylum seekers on Manus have been denied refugee status but all have remained in detention for nearly five years and not accepted cash offers of up about $US20,000 from the Australian government for voluntary repatriation.

While the PNG refugee determination process has been panned by advocates, many men abstained from the process for fear it would result in them being forced to settle in PNG.

The arrests came a day after a United Nations committee was told by an Australian delegation that it was committed to international obligations not to send people back to countries where they faced immediate danger.

*Originally this story said three asylum seekers were arrested but it has been changed to two following new information.

Locals force case managers off island

Meanwhile, case management staff working with refugees on Manus Island have been forced to leave the island by angry locals.

Police said 10 staff from the company JDA Wokman, which was contracted to provide case management and resettlement services, have been told to leave for their own safety after a protest at one of the refugee accommodation centres yesterday.

The protesters blocked access to the East Lorengau Refugee Transit Centre and demanded a landowner company be given the case management contract.

Refugees said the protesters stopped medical staff from entering the accommodation and treating patients for several hours.

  • UN says Australia endangering refugee health
  • Manus Island harming Australia's reputation say doctors
  • PNG police say Manus action peaceful - refugees disagree