Killed in the Manus Island violence: Reza Barati. Photo: Kate Geraghty
The Salvation Army has described a staff member accused of murdering asylum seeker Reza Barati as a hero, saying he was attempting to help those injured in the Manus Island violence.
In its submission to the Senate inquiry into the violence on the island, the Salvation Army described the worker, referred to as ''AB'', as a ''very caring and dedicated worker for transferees''.
It also says the worker was helping asylum seekers caught in the attack, rather than inciting the violence.
''AB dragged three transferees out of the line of fire and returned to protect others,'' human resources manager Pete McClean said.
''AB stated that so many called for AB's help and AB tried to help many including shielding them with AB's own body so that they did not get beaten.''
The statements contradict the version of events laid out by the government's Cornall report, which states the fatal attack on Mr Barati was led by a local Salvation Army worker who hit the asylum seeker with ''a large stick'', a witness told the report's author, Robert Cornall, a former senior public servant.
Papua New Guinean police have launched a fresh effort in their investigation of the events.
More than three months after Mr Barati was killed and 69 others injured, PNG police this week asked security firm G4S for a full list of employees working on Manus Island in mid-February, as well as photos of them. G4S declined to comment.
This comes after the PNG deputy commissioner Simon Kauba made a furious string of accusations against Australia, including suggesting a ''massive cover-up'' and claiming the release of the Cornall report on Monday had hampered its own inquiry.
Also on Friday an explosive report showed children in Nauru's detention centre are suffering severe mental health issues and high rates of suicide attempts.
The report, which was obtained by Guardian Australia, shows there is a lack of health screening of children that could lead to 50 per cent of children carrying latent tuberculosis.