The lawyer of a Somalian alleged rape victim on Nauru has started an online petition to allow her an abortion on the Australian mainland.
“This young girl was raped and left stranded – bring her to Australia for urgent treatment,” reads the petition, which has gained 35,000 signatures so far.
The 23-year-old refugee, who is thought to be between 11 and 14 weeks pregnant, says she was raped while in detention.
“Our client has been subjected to a horrific sexual assault,” lawyer George Newhouse told the ABC.
“She’s currently unable to leave her small room, she’s extremely scared and vulnerable and she’s trying to deal with the fact that she’s now pregnant after this vicious assault.”
The young woman wrote to Malcolm Turnbull and immigration minister Peter Dutton pleading to come to Australia, but has received no response from either, according to Fairfax Media.
It is understood she requires culturally sensitive medical treatment not available on the island.
Bill Shorten hit out at the Prime Minister for his silence on the issue, calling his government “robots with no hearts”.
“This has gone on too long,” he told The Age.
“It’s time for Mr Turnbull and his Liberal Party to show some compassion.
“I’m genuinely stunned and surprised that the government is still refusing to act to help this young woman get the right medical care.”
Abortion is illegal on the island of Nauru, while Mr Dutton previously stated: “All pregnant women receive professional and co-ordinated health care.”
Earlier this month, Mr Dutton announced a probe into claims of sexual assault and the behaviour of guards on Nauru.