Manus Island whistleblower warns more violence is inevitable

Another bloody attack inside the Manus Island detention centre is likely to happen, a G4S whistleblower has warned during an emotional Senate inquiry hearing.

Steve Kilburn, who was working as a G4S staff member during the violence in February told the inquiry that tension outside the centre had also exacerbated, meaning more clashes were inevitable if asylum seekers were to be permanently settled on the island.

'''People have said to me, 'This place is going to blow again for sure,''' Mr Kilburn told the inquiry.

The dangerous combination of cultural, racial and educational differences between the asylum seekers, Australian expats and the local Papua New Guinea workers contributed to a ''bubbling tension'' on the island, he said.

''It is almost an unmanageable situation up there and there are too many external factors at play to enable the place to be run safely and securely, regardless of who the contractor is,'' he said.

But Mr Kilburn said there was a ''huge contradiction'' that if the Australian government was to improve the conditions in the centre, it will only breed more resentment from PNG locals.

''Manus Island is the wrong place to have a regional processing centre,'' he said.

In his opening statement to the inquiry Mr Kilburn became teary as he described the aftermath of the violence that left one asylum seeker, Iranian Reza Barati, dead, another with gunshot wounds and scores of others seriously injured.

''In the three nights that I spent looking after the severely wounded and traumatised, I came to realise that they weren't clients, transferees or asylum seekers, they are people just like us,'' Mr Kilburn said.

''I want to put that on the record so they know that we see them more than just a boat number.''

Shortly after the violence, PNG locals told Mr Kilburn they wouldn't let asylum seekers be resettled.

''Those people will never be safe,'' he was told.

Greens immigration spokeswoman Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said the Australian government could not ignore the ''very real'' danger that asylum seekers will face if they are resettled.

"An eye witness account of the events on Manus Island confirms how toxic and inhumane the Manus Island camp is,'' she said.

"The policy is designed to dehumanise vulnerable asylum seekers and force fear and suffering onto refugees.

"The Australian government cannot continue to ignore the very real danger that refugees will face in PNG.''

The inquiry continues.

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The story Manus Island whistleblower warns more violence is inevitable first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.

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