by Danielle Le Messurier
The Daily Telegraph
February 12, 2019

An Australian Medical Association doctor has been condemned for comparing the treatment of asylum seekers living in offshore processing centres to the Holocaust.

Dr Paul Bauert, the paediatrics representative on the AMA Federal Council, was condemned on Monday over “appalling” comments suggesting people living in detention are worse off than those killed in Nazi gas chambers during World War II.

AMA paediatric representative Dr Paul Bauert. Picture: AAP

In an interview with Sky News, Dr Bauert said offshore processing in places like Nauru has a “lack of certainty” which can cause “severe mental health damage”.

“Even those that finally knew they were about to be condemned at the gas chamber at least found some sense of relief in knowing what was happening,” he said.

NSW Jewish Board of Deputies chief executive Vic Alhadeff slammed Dr Bauert for demonstrating a “gross lack of empathy” for Holocaust victims, survivors and their families.

“The extraordinary ignorance and callousness in the statement that the millions of Jews who were gassed found relief in knowing they were about to be murdered is outrageous and appalling,” he said.

“Whatever his position on offshore detention, drawing a disingenuous comparison between Nauru and the Holocaust is offensive and inaccurate.”

Dr Bauert works as a GP in the Northern Territory but has been involved in assessing children on Nauru who need medical evacuations. He later apologised on social media, saying the words that he used were “intended to reflect the writings of an eminent Jewish psychiatrist who survived Auschwitz”.

Dr Bauert added “Auschwitz was a humanitarian disgrace”, trying to distance himself from his earlier claim.