Asylum seekers stand behind a fence at the Manus Island detention centre, Papua New Guinea. Picture: Eoin Blackwell/AAP

January 1, 2017

TWO Iranian refugees on Manus Island were reportedly bashed by a group of Papua New Guinea police and immigration officials on New Year’s Eve and are now in custody without charge or medical attention.

The Refugee Action Coalition says the two men, whose first names are Mehdi and Mohammad, were joining in new year’s celebrations when they were confronted by Papua New Guinea Immigration officials who told them they had no right to be outside the detention centre, and, along with police officers, assaulted them.

One of the two Iranian refugees reportedly bashed by a group of PNG police and immigration officials on New Year's Eve. Picture: AAP

One of the two Iranian refugees reportedly bashed by a group of PNG police and immigration officials on New Year’s Eve. Picture: AAPSource:AAP

The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection said on Sunday night it was aware of an incident on Manus Island on Saturday involving two Iranian refugees but as a law and order matter, “the issue is primarily one for the PNG police force”.

However, the Refugee Action Coalition says the Australian government is a “party to the brutality”.

Damage to the face of one of two Iranian refugees on Manus Island reportedly bashed by police. Picture: AAP

Damage to the face of one of two Iranian refugees on Manus Island reportedly bashed by police. Picture: AAPSource:AAP

“It’s time the government stopped playing politics with the lives of innocent people, and brought all the asylum seekers and refugees to Australia,” the organisation’s spokesman Ian Rintoul said.

Mr Rintoul told AAP the men were allowed to be outside the detention centre and were not doing anything wrong.

Photos sent to the Refugee Action Coalition show severe injuries to the mens’ head, face, neck and back.

Injuries on the back of one of the men. Picture: AAP

Injuries on the back of one of the men. Picture: AAPSource:AAP

Mr Rintoul said the men were in custody without charge and had not received medical attention or pain relief.

“Mehdi says he believes that his wrist and jaw may be broken while Mohammed is suffering severe headache and pain and thinks his nose is broken,” he said in a statement.

The Refugee Action Coalition obtained details of the incident through a phone call with a friend of the men who is also a refugee.

news.com.au

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