Life on Manus: how Australia transformed a tropical island into a prison

Credit: The Guardian Studio
Published on August 2, 2019 - Duration: 04:33s

Life on Manus: how Australia transformed a tropical island into a prison

In July 2019, Guardian Australia immigration reporter Helen Davidson travelled to Manus Island in Papua New Guinea.

Here she explains how the tropical island became an Australian-run prison.

‘At peak there were around 1,500 men held in the detention centre on Manus Island,’ she says.

‘Over the next few years there were riots, mass hunger strikes, murders, assaults, deaths through medical negligence and allegations against expat staff of raping local women.’ In 2016, the PNG supreme court declared the centre illegal under the country’s constitution and the men were moved out into accommodation centres in Lorengau.

Davidson says the refugees and asylum seekers on Manus Island were devastated by the Coalition’s 2019 election win as Labor had been planning to accept New Zealand’s offer to take up to 150 refugees from Manus Island and Nauru each year.

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Credit: Guardian - Published on August 2, 2019 

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