Australia's human rights watchdog has condemned the country's treatment of refugees. Asylum seekers were being held in "utterly miserable conditions" for prolonged periods of time, the Human Rights Commission said. Children continued to be detained, it said in its annual report. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd promised a more humane refugee policy when he was elected in November 2007 and scrapped the policy of mandatory detention. But a report from the government's own human rights watchdog has found that refugees continue to be held in poor conditions. (BBC)

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