The Government of the Republic of Nauru

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Government Information Office

 

Statement: False media reports of doctor deported

Reports in sections of the Australian media yesterday claiming an Australian doctor was deported from Nauru are false. Clearly, the ABC and some other outlets don't require facts before reporting incorrect information.

The doctor was briefly questioned by police but released without charge after photos were taken of a child without authorisation at the regional processing centre.

Under the Asylum Seekers (Regional Processing Centre) Act 2012, photographing of a protected person is an offence whether inside or outside the centre. There is also a long-standing expressed centre rule which forbids the taking of any photographs within the regional processing centre unless it is authorised.

There was no removal order issued against the doctor nor was the doctor deported from the island as reported in media.

It is regrettable that this occurred as the doctor has been an integral part of the medical services. The Government was not aware that the doctor left the island yesterday. The doctor has a valid visa and a right to practice medicine on the island and we welcome the doctor back on the island as her services are needed.

It is a shame that some sections of the Australian media continue to blatantly report false information about Nauru. This is the reason outlets like the ABC - who should immediately apologise publicly for this blatant breach of journalistic and ethical standards - are not welcome in Nauru. With press freedom comes press responsibility. How long will the ABC and some other journalists be allowed to publish such untruths and be the mouthpiece of activists under the guise of news?