Thursday, November 30, 2017

Final Closure of Manus Island Detention, and a Look Back

Papua New Guinea's Manus Island housed a detention camp for Australian refugee-seekers. That camp closed at the end of October, but many of the migrants housed there refused to leave the facility. After a three week standoff, all migrants have now been removed. The migrants are being housed at three different "transit centres" elsewhere on Manus Island.

It's unclear what will happen to the migrants. As the BBC reports, they've "been given the option of permanent resettlement in PNG, applying to live in Cambodia, or requesting a transfer to Nauru." Some are hoping to resettle in the U.S. pursuant to the plan brokered by President Obama which has been disclaimed by President Trump as the "worst deal ever."

Australian novelist Richard Flanagan recently penned an article for the Guardian in which he roundly rebukes his country's policy towards seagoing refugees.

The wretched of the earth, because they were no longer safe where they lived, sought to come here. With a determined cruelty, we kidnapped and imprisoned them in Pacific lagers. ... evil was being done to the innocent ... The shame of this time will outlive us all.


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