Asylum boat carrying 87 intercepted

24 December 2012

(Media Release) HMAS Melville and HMAS Albany, operating in support of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority’s Rescue Coordination Centre (RCC Australia), rendered assistance to a suspected irregular entry vessel north-north-east of Christmas Island yesterday.

Initial indications suggest there are 87 passengers and three crew on board.

Border Protection Command will now make arrangements for the passengers to be transferred to Christmas Island, where they will undergo initial security, health and identity checks and their reasons for travel will be established.

Merchant Vessel JS Loire, operating under the coordination of RCC Australia, rendered assistance to a suspected irregular entry vessel north-west of Cocos (Keeling) Island on Friday.

Initial indications suggest that 35 people have been embarked in MV JS Loire for passage to Cocos (Keeling) Islands.

ACV Triton will assist the transfer of the people to Australian Government authorities on Cocos (Keeling) Islands, where they will have basic health and security checks. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship will then make arrangements for them to be transferred to Christmas Island, where they will undergo further security, health and identity checks and their reasons for travel will be established.

People arriving by boat without a visa after 13 August 2012 run the risk of transfer to a regional processing country.

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