Alison Rehn; 2/10/09
More than 600 asylum seekers have been granted refugee visas in the past 10 months, more than the number of illegal arrivals recorded in the previous six years. As border protection authorities intercepted yet another boat yesterday, figures showed 645 asylum seekers – mainly from Afghanistan, Iraq and Sri Lanka – were granted visas and resettled on the mainland since the start of the year. The Department of Immigration said that as of yesterday there were 890 illegal arrivals and 16 crew staying in various immigration detention facilities on Christmas Island, including 726 people – all males – staying in the main detention centre. Another 58 people were staying at a different compound, 92 others – most of whom were families and minors – were housed in “alternative detention” at a construction camp with another 30 in community detention arrangements.
Australia, Asia, Human Rights, refugees & Migrants