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Australia: Appalling abuse, neglect of refugees on Nauru

03 August 2016

Around 1 200 men, women, and children who sought refuge in Australia and were forcibly transferred to the remote Pacific island nation of Nauru suffer severe abuse, inhumane treatment, and neglect, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International said today.

“Australia’s policy of exiling asylum seekers who arrive by boat is cruel in the extreme,” said Anna Neistat, Senior Director for Research at Amnesty International, who conducted the investigation on the island for the organization.

The Australian government’s failure to address serious abuses appears to be a deliberate policy to deter further asylum seekers from arriving in the country by boat.

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans.

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