Refugee Action Coalition

PNG Immigration has announced its intention to close Foxtrot Compound inside the Manus detention centre as of today, 26 July. The notice (attached) is the latest in the campaign of Border Force and PNG immigration to force asylum seekers and refugees out of the detention centre.

Refugees on Manus have been told they can be move to the East Lorengau Transit Accomodation but, it is dangerous,with even fewer services that the detention centre. Rations are delivered twice a week to East Lorengau because the refeugees there do not not get enough money to but enough food.

Refugees have been told that moving to East Lornegau will not affect any opportunity to be resettled in the US – but residents at East Lorengau have been pressured to sign to be resettled in PNG.

In any case, re-settlement in the US is entirely speculative. No-one has been told they have been accepted to go to the US.

It is doubtful anyone is going to move voluntarily; Oscar and Delta compounds that house refugees are already overcrowded. East Lorengau cannot fit all the refugees being held inside the detention centre.

“Threats cannot solve the crisis that the Australian governmwent has created for itself on Manus Island. The government has no resettlement arrangements for those they are holding unlawfully on Manus,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

PNG Immigration, Broadspectrum and Wilson’s Security officers have locked gates in areas surrounding Foxtrot in an attempt to prevent refugees occupying unused areas of the detention facility. Overnight the old IHMS buildings became the latest to be demolished.

Over 600 refugees signed and sent a letter to the Australian government and politicians on 24 July (attached) setting out their concerns at the lack of services and safety at East Lorengau as a result of the attempted forced closure of the detention centre.

“Refugees and asylum seekers have been unlawfully detained in PNG since July 2013. They should be unconditionally released and returned to Australia, instead of being subjected to increased threats of detention and deprivation,” said Ian Rintoul.


The Refugee Action Coalition has called for the government to release all minutes and emails relating to the undertaking by the Australian government to the UNHCR to restttle vulnerable and separated families on Nauru.

“The Minister can settle who is telling the truth about the undertaking by releasing all the information the immigration department has,” said Ian Rintoul.

“It would not be the first time that Minister Dutton has been caught telling lies. We are still waiting for him to release the CCTV footage from Good Friday on Manus Island. But that footage has not been released because it would put the lie to his allegations that refugees led a young boy was led into the detention centre. Dutton should be sacked, but instead this unreliable and incompetent Minister is being elevated by Prime Minister Turnbull.”

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713