Resettled Refugee On Nauru Drowns

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Local person also killed trying to save them

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, June 23, 2014) – A refugee, who had resettled on Nauru, has drowned along with a second person who was attempting to rescue them.

A spokeswoman for Immigration Minister Scott Morrison says the person was processed at Australia's Immigration Detention Centre and had been granted a refugee visa by the Nauruan government.

The spokeswoman says it appears the death was accidental but authorities on Nauru are investigating.

"We understand from initial reports that the first deceased person was a private resident of Nauru, on a Nauruan refugee visa, and was accidentally drowned," the Minister said in a statement.

"This is a matter for the government of Nauru as it pertains to an incident involving a resident and citizens of their own country that occurred within their jurisdiction," he said.

He said the person was not a resident at the offshore processing centre.

Mr Morrison extended his sympathies to the families and friends of both people who drowned.

[PIR editor’s note: Meanwhile, Radio New Zealand International reported that "The Australian government has increased the amount of money it offers asylum seekers at its detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru, who accept an offer to return to their countries of origin. … Immigration Minister Scott Morrison confirmed the "return packages" were being offered, with some asylum seekers being given close to 10 thousand US dollars if they accept the offer to return."]

It is understood the second person who died was a Nauruan citizen.

A third person was also injured.

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