Australian photographer forced to delete images after being held by private security guard

Sydney Morning Herald photographer Nick Moir has been detained by private security guards working for an Australian immigration detention centre in Papua New Guinea.

by WAN-IFRA Staff | February 20, 2014

Moir was reportedly detained in the vicinity of the Manus Island hospital, by guards who were operating outside of their jurisdiction, and he was forced by the guards to delete his photographs.

ABC correspondent in PNG Liam Fox has tweeted about a similar recent experience, saying “A…guard marched me out of a private hospital in Moresby on Wednesday while trying to get info on the injured asylum seekers sent there.”

Fox also tweeted that the guards have tried to prevent media taking pictures at Manus Island airport.

Moir was on assignment to Manus Island, where a privately operated Australian detention centre processes asylum seekers offshore on behalf of the Australian Government. This policy is designed to limit the rights of asylum seekers who arrive by boat.

Violence erupted at the detention centre this week, claiming the life of an Iranian man and causing injury to 60 other asylum seekers.

Australian journalists and opposition politicians are calling for an end to the secrecy surrounding the Abbott Government’s handling of asylum seeker policy which is characterised by the slogan “Stop the boats”.

Moir has now been released and the Editor’s Weblog understands that he is attempting to retrieve deleted images.

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