Baulkham Hills Tamil says refugee plan won't stop the boats

Baulkham Hills resident and Tamil community spokeswoman Sara Nathan says sending asylum seekers to Nauru and Manus Island will not stop them getting onto boats and heading for Australia.

Mrs Nathan said she was very happy refugee numbers would be increased following the release of the Asylum Seeker Report on Monday.

''It’s a welcome change,'' she said.

‘‘But I’m really disappointed that they seem to have some inconsistency in sending people to Nauru and leaving them for a long period in Indonesia.

''There are people there who have been assessed as refugees by the UNHCR and they’ve been waiting for 10 years.

''They’re at the end of their tether and they’re getting on boats because sitting in Indonesia waiting doesn’t seem to be helping them.''

Mrs Nathan described the report as ''a crazy political thing''.

''They’re trying to make it difficult for people,'' she said .

''If they took those people in some sort of order and people knew exactly how long they had to wait, then nobody would get on boats.

''People say they’re queue jumpers, but where is the queue?''

Mrs Nathan said people sent to Nauru would receive education and health care.

''If they’re waiting in Indonesia or Malaysia, there is none of that.

''The question to ask the Australian government is how many Tamil refugees have they taken in the past five years from Indonesia and Malaysia? The answer is five families.

''I’m disappointed that there doesn’t seem to be an orderly way of bringing refugees to Australia.

''If you process them in Indonesia and Malaysia they won’t have to get on boats anyway.

''Before we [Australians] play cricket with Sri Lanka and talk about trade relationships, we need to talk to them about their human rights violations .

''Then no-one will need to get on a boat.''

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