Refugee writes emotional letter claiming immigration officials stopped her having an abortion

A Somali refugee who was allegedly raped on the island of Nauru has denied saying that she did not want an abortion despite claims by the Australian immigration minister to the contrary.

A handwritten letter by the woman known only as Abyan says she "never saw a doctor" in Sydney before she was reportedly secretly flown back to the Pacific island which Australia has an immigration detention centre.

Her lawyer George Newhouse also says she merely wanted to seek counselling before undergoing the procedure.

(Picture: George Newhouse)

Her letter reads:

I was raped on Nauru I have been very sick. I have never said that I did not want a termination. I never saw a doctor. I saw a nurse at a clinic but there was no counselling.

I saw a nurse at Villawood but there was no interpreter. I asked but was not allowed to talk with my lawyer. Please help me.

Peter Dutton, the minister for immigration and border protection, told reporters on Saturday that the 23-year-old had changed her mind about the termination and on Monday said that Abyan had been offered counselling services on Nauru beforehand. Mr Dutton also denied the claims that she had not been given access to an interpreter.

Peter Dutton, Australia's immigration minister (Picture: Getty)

According to the Guardian, Abyan has been recognised as refugee after fleeing persecution in Somalia and was reportedly raped on Nauru in July - she is now 14 weeks pregnant.

She had been taken to mainland Australia because an abortion could not be performed in Nauru.

More than 60,000 people have now signed a petition calling on Mr Dutton to provide Abyan with urgent medical assistance.

Abyan's note to Peter Dutton:63,000 people have signed her lawyer's petition on demanding she's given urgent medical assistance - Malcolm Turnbull

Posted by on Sunday, 18 October 2015

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