An Iranian refugee who set himself on fire in protest against Australia's offshore refugee dies in Australian hospital

An Iranian refugee who set himself on fire in protest against Australia's offshore refugee resettlement program in Nauru has died in an Australian hospital, Immigration officials said on Friday.

The 23-year-old man, whose name has not been officially released, was airlifted to Brisbane on Thursday with third-degree burns on most of his torso.
``He died Friday afternoon,’’ the Immigration Department said.

The death came as Australia's policy of detaining illegal migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees at offshore centres in Nauru and in Papua New Guinea came under renewed scrutiny following PNG's decision to close the camp in its territory.

The Iranian made the dramatic gesture on Wednesday to protest his three-year detention in Nauru as three United Nations officials were visiting.
The self-immolation was captured on phone camera and a video was posted online.

``Appropriate support is being provided to his wife and friends.

``The department expresses its sympathies to his wife, family and friends,’’ the Immigration Department said.

Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, said that 850 migrants in Papua New Guinea's Manus Island detention centre would never be allowed into Australia in spite the decision to close the camp.

Turnbull, who earlier warned against being "misty-eyed" over the detention policy, also cautioned against offering Manus inmates settlement in New Zealand.

New Zealand had offered to take 150 of the male refugees from Manus, but Turnbull said they would only use that as a staging post to eventually enter Australia.

``I want to be crystal clear on this; those people at Manus will not come to Australia. Full stop,’’ Turnbull said.

He said that he was in talks with the PNG government over the future of the Manus Island centre.

PNG said that it would close the Manus Island detention centre after its Supreme Court ruled it was unconstitutional. 

Post a comment