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    Australia 'Sick of UN Lectures' on Torture Convention Breaches - Abbott

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    UN said in a report that Australia was systematically breaching the Convention Against Torture by detaining asylum seekers in the Manus Island center, as well as by holding children in immigration detention.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Monday that his country was "sick of being lectured to by the United Nations," after a UN report said that Canberra's treatment of illegal migrants violated an international anti-torture convention.

    UN special rapporteur Juan Mendez said in a report that Australia was systematically breaching the Convention Against Torture by detaining asylum seekers in the disputed Manus Island center, as well as by holding children in immigration detention. The report is to be presented to the UN Human Rights Council Monday.

    "I really think Australians are sick of being lectured to by the United Nations, particularly, particularly given that we have stopped the boats, and by stopping the boats, we have ended the deaths at sea," Abbott said as quoted by the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper.

    According to Abbott, stopping the boats with asylum seekers is "the most humanitarian, the most decent, the most compassionate thing" to prevent people's deaths.

    Asylum seekers are pictured in this handout photo provided by the refugee action coalition, taken inside the Manus Island detention centre in Papua New Guinea January 13, 2015
    © REUTERS / Refugee Action Coalition/Handout via Reuters
    Australia places asylum seekers from Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka in detention camps, such as one on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island. Rights groups have slammed the facility for unbearable conditions of detention.

    In January, some 700 Manus detainees staged a hunger strike, protesting Canberra's decision to resettle them on the island. The detainees said the local population was extremely hostile to them, and the resettlement could be dangerous.

    Australian Human Rights Commission has criticized the country's policies on detention of immigrant children, saying that holding minors for prolonged periods of time had negative effects on their development, and violates international regulations.


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    asylum, human rights, immigration, UN Convention Against Torture, Australian Manus Island detention center, United Nations, Juan Mendez, Tony Abbott, Australia
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