Another group of Sri Lankan men has been flown home from Christmas Island. The 50 men arrived in Australia on asylum seeker boats but the federal government says it did not make claims that triggered Australia’s refugee obligations.
It says the deportations send a clear message: “That people who pay smugglers are risking their lives and throwing their money away.” More than 380 men have been voluntarily and involuntarily sent home to Sri Lanka, since the government resumed offshore processing in August. However, 131 boats and 7,600 asylum seekers have arrived during the same period.
When the processing centres on Nauru and Manus Island are complete, they will only be able to hold 2,100 people.