Nauru. In January, Nauru shocked the fee foreign journalists have to pay to enter the country. In November, the government confirmed that no journalist applied for a visa to enter the country since the fee was raised from US $ 200 to over US $ 7,000. According to Countryaah.com, Nauru population in 2020 is estimated at 10,835. The high fee has been described by Reporters Without Borders, among other things, as a way to prevent a media review of the refugee repository that Australia has placed on coral pay. In February, Naurus’s interior minister accused international media of damaging the country’s reputation through its reporting.
The issue of the refugee camp and the situation of the refugees in Nauru created controversy during the year. In August, 157 Tamil refugees arrived, whose boat was re-launched in June offshore in Australia. The legal representatives of asylum seekers were strongly critical of the Australian authorities’ treatment of the Tamils and called the refugee repository a “hell on earth”. In November, the Australian organization Refugee Action Coalition warned of attacks on refugees in Nauru and accused the police of passively watching. Of the approximately 1,000 asylum seekers that Australia has placed in Nauru, about 100 have received refugee status.
In March, the country’s highest judge, who is an Australian citizen, resigned after having his visa revoked and thus prevented from traveling to the island. Another high-ranking lawyer, also he Australian, was deported from the island in January.
In May, three members of the opposition were shut down, accused of damaging Nauru’s development by making critical statements in foreign media. When the police tried to evict one of the politicians from the parliament building, crowds of people broke out. In June, the government decided for the first time to impose a tax on income and enterprise. From October 2014, high-income earners will pay a 10 percent tax and in July 2015 a corporate tax will be introduced.
In October, Nauru risked going bankrupt after an Australian court decided to freeze the country’s assets. The reason was that an American investment fund demanded to get back the money owed by Nauru. The government appealed to the New South Wales Supreme Court in Australia and got it right, but the fund declared it intended to appeal. The country is still obliged to repay the debt.