January 19, 2015 | the guardian
Authorities attempt to end week-long unrest at centre by taking away up to 30 men from Oscar and Delta compounds, with some reportedly sent to isolation.
Guards in riot gear have entered Delta and Oscar compounds at the Manus Islanddetention centre, attempting to end the week-long protest by force and taking away alleged ringleaders.
Pictures from Oscar compound, obtained by Guardian Australia, appear to show several detainees being walked out of the compound flanked, and in some cases manhandled, by guards.
Just after 4.15pm, guards forced their way first into Delta compound – which had been barricaded since Friday – and arrested several men. How many is unknown.
Guards then moved to Oscar compound, which stands across a narrow roadway from Delta.
Delta and Oscar have been the two compounds where protest has been most vociferous. Delta has been without food or water for two days.
Reports that some men were handcuffed, or dragged along the ground could not be verified.
One detainee told Guardian Australia: “First they attack Delta, then they came to Oscar, they catch people and took out of compound, just right now.
“Out of Oscar I saw them taken away, maybe they take them to PNG police.”
Another detainee reported up to 30 men were taken away, and several were injured.
Pictures taken from inside the compounds, again appearing to show guards taking detainees from the centre. Photograph: Supplied
Some men have also reportedly been taken to Chauka, the isolation unit on Manus, where “non-compliant” detainees are held in solitary confinement.
Over the last two days, the medical situation had grown steadily worse inside the two compounds, with men on hunger strike dangerously ill.
Up to 200 men were suffering severe dehydration across the Manus detention centre, the limited medical centre at the centre was overrun, and at least one detainee has been taken from the island after he reportedly swallowed four razor blades in protest.
Both the Australian immigration department and the immigration minister Peter Dutton have not responded to questions on the raid.
A spokesman for Papua New Guinea’s government told the ABC that Mataio Rabura, the country’s chief migration officer, entered Delta compound and negotiated an end to the barricade, which allowed dehydrated protesters access to medical treatment.