Nauruan police have arrested a 36 year-old Iranian refugees after he attempted suicide on Nauru today, Monday 9 October.

The refugee swallowed washing powder at the Anibare camp, around 4.30pm (Nauru time).  Although the man was in obvious distress, and struggled to strand, instead of an ambulance being called, police arrived and placed him under arrest.

It is the latest instance of the police enforcing the Nauru government edict made last week, in response to the medical emergency that has overwhelmed medical services on Nauru.  The edict demands that police arrest any refugee who threatens or attempts suicide.

It is not known if the police sought medical assistance for the refugee.

The Nauru government has attempted to solve the medical crisis with draconian measures that have made the situation worse, as it desperately tries to maintain the detention regime that underpins the island’s economy.

Medicines Sans Frontier staff were still present on the island on Monday despite the Nauru government abruptly cancelling MSF mental health services two days ago, on Saturday 6 October.

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713