Armed police and locals with machetes, pipes, sticks and stones have attacked asylum seekers in Australia’s offshore detention centre on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea (PNG).
According to Refugee Action Coalition (RAC) in Sydney, Australia, “The attacks started late on Monday night after the power was cut to the detention centre. PNG police and locals then had the run of the detention centre.
Hundreds of asylum seekers have held daily protests since 25 January as frustrations have increased over delays in processing and uncertainty about their future.
“The number of broken hands and baton injuries indicate a use of force out of all proportion. One asylum seeker has 70 stitches in his head,” said Ian Rintoul, from RAC.
He added, “It must be clear now that asylum seekers cannot live safely on Manus Island. They should never have been taken there. Asylum seekers must be brought to Australia.”