More PNG-based refugees sent to US

4:29 pm on 25 September 2018

Seventeen refugees, held on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island for almost five years, have left to resettle in the United States.

Refugees on Manus Island

Refugees on Manus Island Photo: Supplied

The group were all single men and included 11 Pakistanis and six Rohingyans.

The Refugee Action Coalition said 147 refugees from Manus had been accepted by the US so far, but over 600 remain in limbo on Manus or in Port Moresby and around 800 remain on Nauru.

The US is reluctant to accept Iranians, Somali, Sudanese, Iraqi or Syrian refugees for resettlement.

The coalition's Ian Rintoul said the failure of the US deal had left the PNG and the Australian governments with a major humanitarian and refugee rights issue.

He said while a health crisis mounted in PNG and Nauru, it was clear that hundreds of refugees and asylum seekers denied resettlement in the US had nowhere to go, except Australia.

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