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Australia concerned about asylum seekers' behavior

08-16-2012 15:34 BJT

SYDNEY, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) -- Australian Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare has expressed concern for the safety of ships going to the rescue of desperate asylum seekers after an incident earlier this week.

Clare told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) on Thursday that Australian authorities had been involved in coordinating the search for a boat that was in trouble off the coast of Indonesia earlier this week.

He said a merchant vessel was sent by Australian authorities to pick up 67 asylum seekers from the boat and begin a journey to Singapore its destination.

Clare said the asylum seekers became very aggressive when they found out they were not going to Australia.

"The captain rang the Australian Maritime Safety Authority and he made the point that he was concerned for his crew's safety," he said.

The ship then took the asylum seekers to Christmas Island of Australia.

Clare said he was concerned about the behavior of the asylum seekers.

"It shows you just how dangerous it can be when out on the high seas when you've got desperate people doing dangerous things," he said.

"But there's no advantage in that sort of behavior, because these people now face the prospect of going to Nauru."

Australia's House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a bill to enable the government to reinstate offshore processing centers for asylum seekers in South Pacific countries of Nauru and Papua New Guinea.

The Migration Legislation Amendment (Offshore Processing and Other Measures) Bill 2011 aiming to stop people coming to Australia by boats now goes to the Senate for vote.



Editor:James |Source: Xinhua

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