Nauru 2006

Yearbook 2006

Nauru. During the year, the country’s government tried to get Australia to solve the problem of two lone Iraqi refugees held by a neighboring detention camp for five years in Nauru. In 2005, Australia moved almost all asylum seekers from the disputed camp, but the two Iraqis were allowed to stay and Nauru government was concerned about their situation and mental health. The men had been granted refugee status, but the Australian Security Police considered them a security risk for Australia and therefore kept them in Nauru. The bankrupt country is dependent on Australia for its survival and has since 2001 been paid to house refugees. In October, one of the two refugees was taken to Australia for psychiatric care, while the other remained in the camp. In December, the man was able to leave the camp for a third country willing to receive him. According to Australian media, the Iraqis came to Sweden. The Australian Minister of Migration did not want to reveal where he had been granted asylum, but said it was a Scandinavian country.

According to CountryAAH, major public holidays in Nauru include Independence Day (January 31) and New Year (January 1). The national airline Air Nauru struggled in vain to buy back its only aircraft, which a US bank seized in December 2005 because of Nauru’s unpaid debts. After that, the airline managed to maintain limited operations with leased planes. With financial support from Taiwan, Air Nauru was then able to buy a new plane and in September the company started under the new name Our Airline. At a meeting between six island nations in the Marshall Islands in December, Nauru suggested that the neighboring countries start a joint airline.