Calls to action for PM as humanitarian crisis worsens on Nauru

The UN is concerned that the children have "lost hope"

Calls to action for PM as humanitarian crisis worsens on Nauru
Stars Insider

16/10/18 | StarsInsider

HEALTH Nauru

Prime Minister Scott Morrison is being urged by three Liberal backbenchers to take action and remove refugee children from Nauru as the situation has become untenable.

According to the Herald Sun, Craig Laundy, Julia Banks, and Russell Broadbent have vocalised their concerns for the worsening conditions on Nauru and those children who need urgent care. They question the government’s hardline policy on asylum seekers, which sees 100 children and their families detained offshore.

Broadbent told the publication, "This is an embarrassing ­humanitarian crisis that the government needs to resolve in a manner acceptable to the Australian people."

This comes after numerous concerning incidents, including former Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton being taken to court last month in order for a critically ill family to evacuate Nauru to Australia, at his own expense.

The international group Medicins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) was asked to cease operations and leave the island last week, after arriving in November 2017 to assist with the mental health crisis on Nauru.

At a press conference in Sydney after leaving Nauru, MSF Australia's Executive Director Paul McPhun said, "While many asylum seekers and refugees on Nauru have experienced trauma in their countries of origin or during their journey, it is the Australian government's policy of indefinite offshore detention that has destroyed their resilience, shattered all hope, and ultimately impacted their mental health."

McPhun continued, "It's not MSF’s psychiatrists and psychologists that should be leaving Nauru; it's the hundreds of asylum seekers and refugees that Australia has trapped on the island for the past five years that should be leaving."

Concerns were brought to the United Nations Human Rights Council by the Director of Legal Advocacy at the Human Rights Law Centre, Daniel Webb. He stated, "Even the Government's own medical advisers are now speaking out, warning that the situation on Nauru is untenable and that children will die."

Yesterday, Morrison said he would not be forced to back down on border security, dismissing protests by Australian doctors. Today, however, he said he was meeting with the colleagues concerned, as would relevant ministers.

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