Washington: The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has called for the immediate transfer of refugees and asylum seekers out of the Australian-run detention camps on both Manus Island and Nauru. A team from the UNHCR was in Nauru when Omid Masoumali, a young Iranian who died later in a Brisbane hospital, set himself on fire, reports ABC Online. Days later, a 21-year-old Somalian woman set herself alight and remains in a critical condition.
There are approximately 2,000 very vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers on Manus Island and Nauru despite efforts by the governments of Papua New Guinea and Nauru. The arrangements in both countries have proved completely untenable. The UNHCR’s principal concern today is that these refugees and asylum seekers are immediately moved to humane conditions with adequate support and services. Over the last few years, the UNHCR has undertaken regular visits to offshore processing sites to monitor the situation of refugees and asylum seekers, including seven separate occasions to Nauru since 2012.
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