Pacific

Ruling leaves refugees at Papua New Guinea camp in limbo

FILE - In this May 12, 2013 file photo, Iranian asylum seekers who were caught in Indonesian waters while sailing to Australia sit on a boat at Benoa port in Bali, Indonesia. Papua New Guinea's Supreme Court on Tuesday, April 26, 2016 ruled that Australia's detention of asylum seekers at a facility on the country's Manus Island is unconstitutional. The Pacific island nation's ruling could jeopardize Australia's divisive policy of refusing to accept any asylum seekers who attempt to reach its shores by boat. The country pays Papua New Guinea and the tiny Pacific island nation of Nauru to hold them in detention camps instead. (AP Photo/Firdia Lisnawati, File)

FILE - In this May 12, 2013 file photo, Iranian asylum seekers who were caught in Indonesian waters while sailing to Australia sit on a boat at Benoa port in Bali, Indonesia. Papua New Guinea's Supreme Court on Tuesday, April 26, 2016 ruled that Australia's detention of asylum seekers at a facility on the country's Manus Island is unconstitutional. The Pacific island nation's ruling could jeopardize Australia's divisive policy of refusing to accept any asylum seekers who attempt to reach its shores by boat. The country pays Papua New Guinea and the tiny Pacific island nation of Nauru to hold them in detention camps instead. (AP Photo/Firdia Lisnawati, File)  (The Associated Press)

The fate of hundreds of asylum seekers being held in a detention center in Papua New Guinea is in limbo as Australian government officials scramble to respond to a court ruling that Australia's detention of the men on the island nation is illegal.

The fallout from Papua New Guinea's Supreme Court decision came as an Iranian refugee at Australia's other offshore detention center on Nauru set himself on fire in an apparent protest over Australia's strict asylum seeker policies.

Australian Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said the man would be airlifted off the Pacific island nation for medical treatment on Wednesday night.

The court ruling and incident on Nauru prompted fresh questions about Australia's divisive policy of refusing to accept asylum seekers who try to reach its shores by boat.