Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Australia makes new PR push for Nauru refugees

Australia makes new PR push for Nauru refugees

Refugees hold signs during a protest against the Australia-Cambodia refugee deal last year on Nauru.
Refugees hold signs during a protest against the Australia-Cambodia refugee deal last year on Nauru. Photo supplied

Australia makes new PR push for Nauru refugees

Australia has begun another round of public relations campaigning in an attempt to persuade refugees on the Pacific island of Nauru to resettle in Cambodia under a controversial agreement signed last year.

A government contractor on Nauru, Connect Settlement Services, has reportedly been passing out leaflets in a camp reserved for single male asylum seekers, angering residents.

“In the last few days, Connect has started to put the Cambodian information sheet under the doors of every room in the single men’s camp,” said Ian Rintoul of the Refugee Action Coalition Sydney.

“This has really angered the men, who see it as harassment and mental torture. They said [they] have already rejected Cambodia.”

A Cambodian delegation visited Nauru in September and shortly afterwards, the government announced that two more refugees had agreed to resettle in Phnom Penh under the A$55 million (US$39.4 million) deal.

Australia has been seeking alternative third-country resettlement options, including the Philippines, which rejected the proposal. Interior Ministry spokesman Khieu Sopheak could not be reached yesterday.

Australian officials did not respond to a request for comment.

MOST VIEWED

  • Virus tops 84 with new cases in S’ville

    The Ministry of Health on Sunday night confirmed another 31 cases of coronavirus infections, bringing the Kingdom’s total to 84 and it highest daily tally. There have been no fatalities thus far. The latest cases were found in 29 French tourists and their two Cambodian tour guides

  • Two French tourists latest Covid-19 cases in Kingdom

    The Kingdom on Saturday saw two more cases of coronavirus infections, bringing the total to 53. While the majority of the previous cases are linked to a Muslim religious gathering in Malaysia, the latest cases involved two French tourists visiting Sihanoukville. The Ministry of Health said

  • Kingdom’s virus toll tops 84, Cambodians in Thailand rush home

    The Ministry of Health on Sunday night confirmed another 31 cases of coronavirus infections, bringing the Kingdom’s total to 84 and its highest daily tally. There have been no fatalities thus far. The latest cases were found in 29 French tourists and their two Cambodian tour guides

  • NBC calls for cashless payments

    The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) has urged government ministries, financial institutions and the public to conduct cashless payments via electronic systems where possible to combat the spread of Covid-19. “To contribute to the prevention of Covid-19, the National Bank of Cambodia encourages financial institutions

  • CEO held for fraud in Siem Reap

    Over 200 individuals gathered in front of the Siem Reap Provincial Court last week to ask that Dim Suonnath, the CEO of a real estate company being held for fraud, take responsibility for compensating some 2,000 residents who invested with him. The request was denied. Suonnath responded

  • Ministry calls for home schooling

    Minister of Education, Youth and Sport, Hang Chuon Naron appealed to parents of students to provide home education in a proper environment and help them obtain more learning materials. The ministry also allowed schools to take a premature vacation after several people tested positive for