Manus Island protests: Asylum seekers to reportedly be sent to Port Moresby jail


Caption: Immigration Minister Peter Dutton.Photo:SUPPLIED.

Staff at the Manus Island detention centre are reportedly preparing to transfer a group of asylum seekers to a prison complex in Port Moresby after days of protest at the centre.

 The men are considered leaders of recent protests at the Australian-run immigration centre, but it is not clear if the men have been charged or how many will be sent to the capital.Local media has reported 14 men will be sent to Bomana prison in Port Moresby.

Earlier this week more than 40 men were detained by guards at the detention centre’s Delta compound, ending a three-day blockade.The ABC has obtained a video reportedly sent from inside the prison.Asylum seekers said the cuts and bruises seen in the images were from police and guards beating them.The claims come despite statements from the Australian and Papua New Guinean governments saying the force used to restrain so-called agitators was “minimal”.More asylum seekers are being held in police cells nearby.

It is not clear if any of these men have been charged with a crime under PNG law.A spokesman for Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said enforcement of PNG laws was a matter for the PNG government.

Meanwhile, at least six refugees have been transferred to a transit facility near the main town in Manus Island awaiting resettlement.Three Iranians, two Pakistanis and an Afghan man have moved to the East Lorengau transit facility.They leave behind protests at the detention centre.

More refugees are expected to arrive at the transit facility where they will learn the local language Tok Pisin, and wait for an employment opportunity that will allow them to resettle elsewhere in PNG.

Source: Radio Australia (ABC)

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