Senate inquiry wants to hear from Manus Island witnesses

WITNESSES to the Manus Island detention centre riot that saw one man killed and scores injured will be encouraged to give evidence at a Senate inquiry into the matter.

The Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young gained Labor's support on Wednesday to hold the inquiry, which she described as the only "independent" investigation of the riot.

She labelled government investigations into the riot a fortnight ago as a "white-wash", calling on the government to allow the inquiry inside the detention centre to conduct hearings.

While it is unlikely the inquiry would be allowed inside the centre, she said the committee could conduct phone hearings and put evidence into the public arena that government reviews would not.

It will also look at the conduct of Immigration Minister Scott Morrison before, during and after the event, and is expected to run after the government inquiry finishes next month.

The Senate committee will also examine the circumstances of Iranian asylum seeker Reza Barati's death during the riot, and aim to seize a raft of government documents related to the uproar.


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