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March 2021

Introduction Human Rights Watch submits the following information regarding Papua New Guinea's implementation of recommendations it accepted through its 2015 Universal Periodic Review (UPR) as well as information about developments in the human rights…
A boy and a woman at a bus stop in Port Moresby.
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In its latest effort to keep asylum seekers from reaching the United States, the Trump administration enacted a new rule on July 16 that effectively bars anyone from seeking asylum in the United States who tries to cross the southern U.…
Demonstrators protest against the detention of asylum seekers at Australian-run offshore detention centers on the island of Nauru and Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island, in Sydney, Australia, August 31, 2017.
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Re: Protecting Human Rights in Australia’s Foreign Policy

Dear Minister Payne, Congratulations on your reappointment as foreign minister. Human Rights Watch looks forward to working with you to make protection of human rights a strong pillar of Australia’s foreign policy. We attach a…
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Although mounting political pressure has compelled the Australian government to remove most children from Nauru, refugees and people seeking asylum in Australia continue to face significant risks to their physical and mental health.   …
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Australia Can End This Human Rights Tragedy

Since October 31, hundreds of men have barricaded themselves in an abandoned complex on a naval base where security forces have previously shot at and attacked them. Exhausted, with no power and no running water in the tropical heat,…
Refugees and asylum seekers protest against Australia’s offshore processing policy at a detention center on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea.
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It's time for Australia to bring all refugees and asylum seekers to safety.

Last month, after more than four years of suffering, 25 excited and nervous male refugees left Papua New Guinea's remote Manus Island for a new life in the United States. Left behind are another 800 men - refugees and asylum-…
Asylum-seekers look through a fence at the Manus Island detention centre in Papua New Guinea March 21, 2014.
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It’s no surprise that US President Donald Trump would suggest rethinking the refugee deal the Australian government struck with the Obama administration in November. It may indeed go ahead—although the president criticized it, his press secretary said on…
Held by Australia on Nauru for three years, a refugee girl chooses freedom as what she most needs, August 2016.
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Casting about for ways to manage refugee flows, some European policymakers speak of emulating Australia’s use of offshore processing centers in neighboring countries. But Australia’s approach to asylum seekers is fiscally irresponsible, morally bankrupt,…
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Alexander Van der Bellen, who campaigned on moderation and tolerance, won Austria’s presidential election. But in the search for explanations as to how the country came close to electing a far-right populist as its president, some have suggested that…
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This week in New York, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said, “Our policy on border protection is the best in the world,” and he’ll be touting the Australian model of offshore refugee detention and resettlement at two refugee summits this week.…
A child held at Australia’s offshore refugee processing center on Nauru chooses freedom as what he most needs.
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The detention of more than 1,500 Papuan independence supporters on May 2 for “lacking a permit to hold a rally” speaks volumes of the government’s stubbornly problematic approach to dealing with dissent in the restive territory of Papua. This approach has…
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On February 3, the High Court of Australia ruled that the country’s offshore processing arrangements with Nauru are authorised under Australian law - but the court did not consider whether the policy comports with international law. …
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“I went to the police 17 times. I went every week for the last month. They said this is a domestic problem," Jenella (not her real name) told me. "They just told my husband not to do it again." Jenella's story is all too common in Papua New…
A woman holding a child looks down the valley from Kassam Pass.
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Ruth, 29, shows me a fresh wound, slowly healing, on the top of her head, while she stays at a safe house in Port Moresby. “About 6.30am. I was getting ready for work. We had an argument ... My husband threw a rock. My head was broken. No one helped,” she…
A woman holding a child looks down the valley from Kassam Pass.