UN urges Australia to fix Manus ‘mess’

THE UN refugee agency is accusing Australia of abandoning hundreds of refugees and asylum seekers on Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island, saying it must take responsibility for the mess it’s created with its “offshore processing” system.

About 800 refugees are still in a precarious situation on Manus Island, having been forcibly removed from a holding camp last month when Australia decided to close it, UNHCR spokeswoman Cecile Pouilly told a regular UN briefing in Geneva on Friday.

“We are talking here about people who have suffered tremendously, extreme trauma, and are now feeling so insecure in the places where they are staying. There are many victims of torture, people who have been deeply traumatised, having no idea what is going to happen next to them,” she said.

“In light of the continued perilous situation on Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island for refugees and asylum seekers abandoned by Australia, UNHCR has called again this week on the Australian government to live u…

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