Two asylum seekers on Manus Island were arrested and assaulted by up to 10 Papua New Guinea police and immigration officers on New Year’s Eve, refugee advocates say.
The Refugee Action Coalition said the two Iranians suffered several broken bones in the incident, and photos supplied by the coalition also showed the pair with cuts and bruises on their faces.
On Sunday, Ian Rintoul from the Refugee Action Coalition said the men had yet to receive any medical treatment.
It seems very likely that we are talking about broken noses, broken wrists other broken bones and the police have made absolutely no attempt to get medical attention for them.”
A spokesperson for the Department of Immigration said the department was aware of an incident involving two asylum seekers, but that it was a matter for the PNG police force.
Mr Rintoul said that was not good enough.
“The Australian Government is ultimately responsible for all the people who are held on the island, but I think it’s very clear that we need an investigation into this particular bashing,” Mr Rintoul said.
He said the men involved had done nothing wrong when they were set upon by the police officers.
“This bashing on New Year’s Eve is an indication of the kind of treatment that is systematically handed out, part and parcel of what the Australian Government maintains in the offshore detention centres,” Mr Rintoul said.
“There needs to be oversight on the role of the PNG police and the attitude of the PNG police.”
The incident follows the death of a Sudanese asylum seeker who collapsed at the Manus Island detention centre just before Christmas.