Police to assist with relocation of refugees

The police force will assist the Immigration Department relocate the 551 genuine refugees and 167 non-genuine refugees to the three new transit camps on East Lorengau in the Manus Province.

Commissioner of Police Gari Baki says although the police manpower is outnumbered by the 718 refugees now on the island, a smooth transfer is expected to take place on Monday, October 31.

Police say there is a small disgruntled faction among the refugees at the Lombrum Navy Base who are creating uncertainty among the rest of the refugees.

“Extra manpower is on standby to be deployed to Manus Island to assist the local police in addition to the two Mobile Squad now on the Island,” says Baki in a statement.

“The safety of both the refugees and government workers, plus staff members of leading agencies, is not to be taken for granted given the tension that is now being expressed by the locals on Manus Island.

“Any other social issues that have arisen on the Island concerning the refugees are the responsibility of appropriate Government agencies that will deal with it accordingly.”

A meeting will take place today (27th October) on Manus Island with the Immigration Department and other Government agencies to address the logistical and security details for the transfer that will take place next week.

The Commissioner of Police is appealing to the people of Manus not to create any uncertainty and let the transfer of the refugees be done as smoothly as possible.

(Loop file pic)

Press Release