Morrison: One Dead, Thirteen Seriously Injured In Manus Island Disturbance

5.45pm Update: Morrison Holds Second Press Conference On Manus Island Incident

After a day of confused reports from Papua New Guinea, the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Scott Morrison, held a second press conference on the overnight incident at Manus Island which resulted in the death of one person.

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11.00am – Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has confirmed that one person is dead after a “serious incident” at Manus Island overnight.

Morrison said “perimeter breaches” occurred at the asylum seeker processing centre over a four hour period. “That incident involved persons at around just after 11 after some demonstrations, noise and various things being able to break through the fence.” [Read more…]

ABC Says Its Reports Of Asylum Seekers’ Claims Should Have Been “More Precise”

The ABC has conceded that its reports of claims by asylum seekers of mistreatment by Navy personnel should have been “more precise”.

After several weeks of media coverage of its reporting of the claims and an adverse finding by its own Media Watch program, the ABC’s Managing Director, Mark Scott, and the Director of News, Kate Torney, issued a statement in which they say that there was no attempt to “pre-judge” the claims.

They said: “The ABC has not attempted to play judge and jury on this matter. We have reported the asylum seeker claims, broadcast the video showing burns and consistently sought more detail from witnesses and officials.”

Media statement from the ABC.

ABC Statement

The ABC, along with other national media, has been covering an important story about recent asylum seeker boats being turned around and investigating what occurred on board those boats. There have been allegations from asylum seekers that Navy personnel mistreated and caused injury to some of them – allegations that have been strongly denied. [Read more…]

Morrison: No Boats For 36 Days

The Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Scott Morrison, has applauded the latest report from Operation Sovereign Borders confirming there have been no boat arrivals for 36 days.

Morrison said “illegal arrivals” have declined by 80% in the first 100 days of Operation Sovereign Borders but “this is not the time for stepping back, but to maintain the full pressure of our operations on criminal people smugglers”.

Today’s weekly report was posted online. Morrison has abandoned his weekly press conferences.

The ABC’s fact-checking unit says the government is wrong to refer to asylum seekers as “illegal”.

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Today’s update from Operation Sovereign Borders.


Media release from Scott Morrison, Minister for Immigration and Border Protection.

Operation Sovereign Borders Report Confirms 36 Days Without A Boat

The Government welcomes today’s Operation Sovereign Borders weekly update confirming that there have been no persons illegally arriving by boat transferred to our immigration authorities for 36 days.

This is the longest period of no illegal boat arrivals since March of 2009, when arrivals first started to significantly escalate as a consequence of the former Labor Government’s decision to abolish the strong border protection regime they inherited from the Howard Government. [Read more…]

Boat Arrivals In Australia: Statistics Since 1976

The Parliamentary Library has released a paper setting out the number of asylum seeker arrivals by boat since 1976.

The paper, Boat arrivals in Australia: a quick guide to the statistics, is by Janet Phillips.

It shows that in financial year 1975-76, in the aftermath of the end of the Vietnam War, one boat carrying 5 people arrived in Australia, followed by around 2000 people over the next few years. There was only one boat in the 1980s. Numbers rose again in 1999 and peaked in calendar year 2001 with 43 boats carrying 5516 people.

Boat arrivals between 2001 and 2008 numbered only a few hundred before climbing again from 2009 and peaking in 2013 with 300 boats and 20,587 people. [Read more…]