Overnight, in a Twitter stream, the member of parliament for Manus Open, Ron Knight (pictured), told of how the recent violence developed drawing from reports he received from participants and observers. We have assembled the tweets into this story. The image below is the full text of a statement on the incident released last night by PNG Defence Force chief of staff, Colonel Raymond Numa....
THE children of soldiers attempted to play soccer on the base sports field while asylum seekers were also passing ball around. They were yelled at and chastised.
A duty officer in uniform stepped in and asked them to share the field. He was assaulted and chased off the field bleeding.
Duty personnel arrived and the base alarm sounded.
A huge fight ensued with refugees being chased to closed detention centre.
Police tried to stop the siege and were beaten and chased out by irate soldiers, who felt a build-up of frustration over continuing harassment of their dependants by asylum seekers.
Wilson Australia guards ran away and hid, leaving the refugees to their own fate. The soldiers then identified the asylum seekers who had fought them.
A police hire car and much infrastructure was damaged and police were banned from the base.
About 75 shots were fired into the air by soldiers, some hitting buildings.
The PNGDF hierarchy is sending an investigation team to assess the issue.
This is just another incident that will ignite again if the Australian government does not accept responsibility and a duty of care for these refugees and process them properly.
We do not condone such violence.