CCTV.com - CNTV English - CCTV News

Detention center expansion shows failing of Australian border policies: Opposition

03-04-2011 09:43 BJT

CANBERRA, March 4 (Xinhua) -- Australian federal Opposition said on Friday the government's major expansion of immigration detention facilities shows its border protection policies are failing.

On Thursday night, Immigration Minister Chris Bowen announced 1, 900 new beds will be built around Darwin of Northern Territory, including 400 extra beds at the Darwin Airport facility and a new detention center to be leased for three years.

Scott Morrison, Opposition's immigration spokesman, said the announcement would bring the total of new detention center beds to nearly 5,000 since the last election.

"Labor have announced and opened more beds in detention centers than they have in public hospitals," he told ABC News on Friday.

"As long as the boats keep coming more beds will be needed, people are going to continue to spend longer in detention, and the costs are going to continue to escalate," he said, "Their budget has already blown out by a factor of a billion dollars. The costs annually have been increased by a factor of seven times since this Government came to office."

Meanwhile, Bowen said the government cannot say how many new asylum seekers it expects to have to house over the next few years.

"It's very hard to predict exact numbers ... we don't make forecasts," he told ABC Radio on Friday.

"(But) it's well known that the number of boat arrivals has been high of recent times. It's well known that our detention network has been under pressure."

The immigration minister said the new center would ensure against overcrowding, but the 1500-bed facility "might not all be necessary or it might all be necessary".

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said there is only one way to stop overcrowding and "that's to stop the boats and the boats will just keep coming unless the government changes policy."

The Refugee Council of Australia said building a new detention center in Darwin is a short-term fix and will not resolve the underlying problems with current border policies.

The council said Australia should look to Europe and the United States where asylum seekers are released into community detention facilities after basic identity and health checks.

 

Editor:Yang Jie |Source: Xinhua

Hot Videos view more

The celebrations are still continuing as the victorious coach, Joachim Loew, has been honored for his achievement in his hometown of Freiburg.
Germany coach Loew honored in hometown of Freiburg

Chinese men´s national team continued its preparations for next year´s Asian Cup, as they managed a one-all draw against visitors Jordan during a football friendly in Harbin, the capital city of Northeast China´s Heilongjiang Province.
China held to 1-1 draw by Jordan

The defending world champs came into the contest with a perfect 6-and-oh record, but they would be in for a tough first half before opening things up in the second.
USA beat Slovenia 119-76 in quarter-finals

Hot Stories more

UK authorities believe killer of James Foley is a British national

Across the UK the hunt is on for James Foley’s killer, who authorities believe is a British national. As Richard Bestic reports from London, Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his summer break to lead his government’s response.

Israeli war jets renews Gaza strike as truce talks stalled

Three Palestinians were killed and 40 others wounded in the intensive Israeli war jets´ airstrikes on the Gaza city on Tuesday night, shortly before an end of a 24-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,

Missouri police arrest dozens after violent night

As the protests in the town of Ferguson, Missouri turned violent with police facing ´heavy gunfire´ from some ´criminal elements´, cops fired tear gas, stun grenades and arrested 31 demonstrators on Monday night.

Picture in news more

More Video News

Choose TV Program