“The government has taken a firm policy to stop people reaching Australia illegally by boat.”
In 2013 the Australian government introduced its toughest boarder protection measures called Operation Sovereign Borders, a military-led border security initiative to stop the boats prevent people from risking their lives at sea, and preserve the integrity of Australia’s migration program.
“The policy has changed and all of those measures still applies,” Mudie said. “If a person gets on a boat without a visa, they will not end up in Australia. The rules apply to everyone, families, children, unaccompanied children, educated and skilled. There are no exceptions to this policy.”
Since Operation Sovereign Borders began in 2013, every Sri Lankan boat that has attempted to go Australia illegally has failed.On 26 November 2014, Sri Lanka and Australia worked together to disrupt a people smuggling venture carrying 38 Sri Lankan nationals attempting to travel illegally by boat to Australia.
In July 2014, 41 Sri Lankan nationals were returned to Sri Lanka when their boat was intercepted by Australian authorities.
“There are two outcomes for people who travel illegally by boat to Australia,” Mudie said.
“They will be intercepted and safely removed from Australian waters or sent to another country for offshore processing.
Processing and resettlement in Australia will never be an option.”