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United Nations urges Australia to act on Manus Island as conditions worsen

23 Novembre 2017

"The Australian taxpayers have paid about $10 million for a new facility and we want people to move", he told Sydney radio station 2GB.

"The refugees are sitting peacefully and immigration and police are asking them to leave the prison camp", tweeted Behrouz Boochani, one of the men inside the Manus Island center who is defying attempts by Australia and PNG to close the facility.

"The situation on the ground is very serious and deteriorating day by day", said Nai Jit Lam, a regional representative of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) on Tuesday.

"Navy soldiers are outside the prison camp".

She said her offer of taking Manus Island refugees may not be welcome, but she saw a role with Manus Island to "assist Australia".

A dozen celebrated Australians have sent an open letter to the government warning that asylum seekers could die at a decommissioned immigration camp where food, water power and medical care were cut off more than three weeks ago.

It comes as footage emerges of PNG authorities storming the mothballed Manus Island detention centre, demanding the hundreds of men inside leave immediately.

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On Thursday, multiple men inside centre reported that PNG police had given them a one-hour deadline to leave the camp.

Under a controversial policy, Australia has detained asylum seekers who arrive by boat in camps on Manus Island and Nauru, a small Pacific nation.

"(Baki) is confident the operation will be carried out successfully and in an orderly manner".

Australia's immigration office did not have an immediate comment when contacted by Reuters.

"We believe it is time to stop the unacceptable and internationally criticised treatment of the refugees on Manus Island, who, though innocent of any crime, have been incarcerated and now abandoned there", the letter says.

The camps' conditions have been slammed by human rights groups, which have also campaigned to have them shut amid reports of widespread abuse, self-harm and mental health problems.

United Nations urges Australia to act on Manus Island as conditions worsen