Australia Declines Aid from New Zealand in Refugee Crisis

Refugees protest on Manus Island with Australian Senator Nick McKim

Refugees and asylum seekers on Papua New Guinea 's Manus Island sat in on Saturday, in the wake of Australian advocates who took to the streets against the backdrop of Australia.

A deal was struck previous year between Canberra and the administration of former president Barack Obama to take up to 1250 of the refugees, but so far only 54 from Manus and Nauru have been accepted.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has urged the Prime Minister to allow the remaining detainees on Manus Island to be resettled in New Zealand.

Human Rights Watch and refugees on the island on Friday called on visiting German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier to put pressure on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

"The only way you can do that would be to insist they hold onto their given nationality for the whole time they're in New Zealand".

Ms Ardern said the offer still stands.

More than 1,000 people protested in Australia yesterday against the treatment of hundreds of asylum seekers in an offshore detention centre that the United Nations has described as an "unfolding humanitarian emergency".

Protesters say Manus Island is Australia's Guantanamo Bay.

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There was no immediate comment from Australia or its representatives in Geneva.

"We will not have our immigration programme, our sovereignty, our borders outsourced to people smugglers", he said.

New Zealand, which takes a total of 750 refugees a year, made an initial resettlement offer under John Key's Government in 2013 to the then Labor Gillard government.

"We call on the Australian government. who interned the men in the first place to immediately provide protection, food, water and other basic services", United Nations rights spokesperson Rupert Colville told a news briefing.

They vowed not to leave, even though many are beginning to feel the ill-effects of going several days without food. "They are starving and their bodies are getting weak".

Meanwhile, the PNG Supreme Court will hear an application from refugee lawyers today that could result in orders for life support services to be restored at the detention centre.

Food, medicine, power and water have been cut from the former detention center.

Some 600 refugees at the center are living without electricity and food supplies after refusing to move to temporary accommodation in the island's main town, saying they fear being attacked by locals.

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