International Justice

CJ354 Endicott College

Crimes Against Refugees in Nauru

“On Nauru, the Australian government runs an open-air prison designed to inflict as much suffering as necessary to stop some of the world’s most vulnerable people from trying to find safety in Australia,” said Anna Neistat, Amnesty International’s Senior Director for Research

Nauru has a population of 10,000 people, and with approximately 1,159 asylum seekers and refugees (third highest proportion of refugees per capita). Out of these asylum seekers, 410 are held in the Refugee Processing Center where they are driven to suicide because of the conditions they live in, which Amnesty claims is torture.

Not only are the people in the Center the target of abuse, but also those who live among the population. Dozens have experienced physical attacks some that include sexual assault. One incident includes, a refugee family that moved into the community have been repeatedly attacked in their homes and have had their property destroyed.
Until now, no Nauru citizens are held accountable for their actions; instead many refugees have been arrested and imprisoned. “Arbitrary arrests as a form of intimidation are common on Nauru.”

The community in Nauru also do not care about refugees well being. Many people have been discharged from the hospital when they are clearly still sick. Many are experiencing deteriorating mental health, and doctors are not prescribing the right medication to help them. “Amnesty said that 58 detainees, or about 15 percent of the total on Nauru, to whom it spoke for its report, had either attempted suicide or have had thoughts about harming themselves.”

It is interesting how a government will go to great lengths to stop people from seeking refugee in their country. Australian government believes that they need to set harsh rules to those who want to enter their country, they will try everything in their power to deter them.


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