| Woedende asielzoekers branden AZC in Australie deels af |
-(/-\)- - 21.04.2011 06:45
Gister zijn er heftige rellen uitgebroken in het Villawood asielzoekercentrum in het Australische Sydeney. Het begon met een klein protest op het dak van een van de gebouwen, maar breidde zich snel uit tot een rel van meer als 100 gevangenen. 9 gebouwen zijn (deels) afgebrand. De oproerpolitie moest ingeet worden om er een eind aan te maken.
21 April 2011
Rioters torch Australia asylum seeker detention centre
Firefighters battle blaze at Villawood detention centre in Sydney, Australia - 21 April 2011 Detainees at Villawood have complained of lengthy waits to have their asylum claims heard
Detainees at an Australian centre for processing asylum seekers have rioted and burnt down nine buildings.
The rioters threw roof tiles and other objects at firefighters, preventing them from putting out the blazes at the Villawood detention centre in Sydney.
The riot started with a rooftop protest from two detainees and spread to involve 100 people late on Wednesday.
Protests at Australia's detention centres have become more frequent as the number of asylum seekers has risen.
Immigration Department spokesman Sandi Logan said no injuries had been reported at Villawood.
Riot police had to be called in to restore order after the centre's unarmed guards retreated in the face of the riot.
"It took some time for the firefighters to be able to gain entry," he said.
"They had had roof tiles and other pieces of furniture being hurled at them by some of the detainees so it was impossible for them to extinguish the blaze in the early hours of the morning.
"But with the riot squad protection they were able to do that."
A large gas cylinder exploded and a kitchen, laundry, medical facility and a computer centre were destroyed.
Mental health warning
In recent months there have been a number of violent riots, suicides and self-harm attempts at Australian detention centres, says the BBC's Nick Bryant in Sydney.
There have been complaints from detainees about overcrowding and the length of time it takes to process their applications, our correspondent says.
There was another riot at the Christmas Island high security detention centre last month following a breakout.
The increase in the number of asylum seekers arriving by boat has led to overcrowding at Christmas Island and other detention centres.
Last year, rights group Amnesty International warned that the mental health of some of the asylum seekers held on Christmas Island was deteriorating because of uncertainty over their situation and the conditions in which they were being held.
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