Papua New Guinea Supreme Court denies restoring supplies to Australian-run refugee center | News | DW | 07.11.2017
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Papua New Guinea Supreme Court denies restoring supplies to Australian-run refugee center

The camp closed on October 31 after the court had found it unconstitutional. But the 600 refugees have refused to move due to fears that locals may attack them.

Papua New Guinea's Supreme Court on Tuesday denied a request by refugees for the island's authorities to restore power, food and water to an Australian-run immigration center where they are currently being held.

Nearly 600 men have remained in the Manus Island facility in the past week, despite Papua New Guinean officials permanently closing the center on October 31.

Both Australia and Papua New Guinea have since urged the men to move to three transit centers in the town of Lorengau on the eastern end of Manus Island.

But the men have refused to relocate due to fears that local residents may attack them. They have been facing limited access to food and drinking water and some men reportedly need medical attention.

Read more: Australia shutters Papua New Guinea detention center

Read more: Manus Island: UN urges Australia to end 'humanitarian emergency'

The United Nations (UN) has described the drama as an "unfolding humanitarian emergency" and called on the Australian government to supply basic services to the facility.

The Australian government has been heavily criticized for its handling of the situation.

Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, whose government signed the agreement that set up the center in 2013, criticized Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's administration on Tuesday.

"Turnbull's handling of Manus is inhumane. The 2013 agreement was for a year. Turnbull has failed to resettle them, so they should come to Oz [shorthand for Australia – Editor's note]," he wrote in a Twitter post.

On Saturday, hundreds of people took to the streets of Melbourne and Sydney to protest the refugees' treatment.

The initial closure occurred after the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court announced in 2016 the Manus facility was unconstitutional.

amp/kl (Reuters, ABC News Australia)

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