Salvos attack Canberra over Manus Island report

    The Salvation Army has attacked the Abbott government and its independent report on the Manus Island violence, maintaining the innocence of a worker accused of delivering the final blow to Reza Barati's skull.

    During the second day of a Senate inquiry into the Manus Island attack in February, the Salvation Army said the Papua New Guinea police had not yet contacted it, despite investigating Mr Barati's death.

    The inquiry also heard that another bloody attack inside the Manus Island detention centre was imminent, with G4S whistleblower Steve Kilburn warning that tension had risen considerably.

    Salvation Army's chief executive Sharon Callister then attacked the government, claiming the organisation had been misrepresented by Immigration Minister Scott Morrison, and that the government's independent Cornall review had reported ''selectively''.

    ''The way in which the minister made reference to the event in question gave the very clear impression, which was picked up by media, that the Salvation Army staff member was found by Mr Cornall to have engaged in the assault in question,'' Ms Callister said. ''The Salvation Army is profoundly disappointed the minister made such comments in the absence of any clear and reliable evidence.''

    The Salvation Army says the worker, who is no longer working for it, was trying to save asylum seekers rather than injure them.

    In the lead-up to the violence, there was a dangerous combination of cultural, racial and educational differences between the asylum seekers, Australian expats and PNG workers that contributed to a ''bubbling tension'', the inquiry heard.

    ''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,'' Mr Kilburn said.

    There was also 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, Mr Kilburn said. ''Manus Island is the wrong place to have a regional processing centre.''

    The inquiry also heard from migration agency Playfair, which is responsible for preparing asylum seekers' statements submitted for the refugee claim process, that three processing teams had their trips to Manus Island cancelled at short notice.

    The inquiry continues.

    This story Salvos attack Canberra over Manus Island report first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.