Group of Sri Lankans removed from Australia
Friday, 02 November 2012
A group of 26 Sri Lankan nationals has been returned to Sri Lanka on a charter flight that left from Christmas Island late yesterday.
The single adult males, who arrived by boat at Christmas Island and Cocos Islands earlier this week, were advised of their status and that they were subject to removal from Australia.
They raised no issues that engaged Australia's international obligations.
Without a valid visa they had no legal right to remain in Australia and were removed at the earliest opportunity.
This government is committed to breaking the evil people smuggling trade and preventing people from taking dangerous boats.
People who pay smugglers are risking their lives and throwing their money away. There is no visa awaiting them on arrival, no speedy outcome, and no special treatment.
We will continue to regularly transfer people to Nauru and shortly to Manus Island, and seek to return them where appropriate.
The final member of the group of 15 Sri Lankans who arrived on vessel Chejan (subject of an alleged incident in Sri Lankan waters on 13 October) has also been returned. This man raised no issues that engaged Australia's international obligations.
As with the particular case of those people returned to Sri Lanka last week, there are powers available to the government to return people where they do not engage Australia's international obligations – and when appropriate we certainly intend to use them.We have seen 116 Sri Lankans returned home – voluntarily and involuntarily – since 13 August, as people realise that these smugglers only sell lies and false promises about what awaits people in Australia.
Last update: Friday, 02 November 2012 at 09:41 AEST