Change in processing asylum seekers in Australia causes concernListen /
The United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) has expressed concern about a possible change in the processing of refugees and asylum seekers arriving in Australia by boat.
This follows the passing by the Australian parliament of a law under which refugees and asylum seekers would be processed in offshore camps in the Pacific region.
Adrian Edwards is UNHCR spokesman in Geneva.
"UNHCR's preference remains an arrangement which would allow asylum seekers arriving by boat in Australian territory to be processed in Australia. This would be consistent with general practice. We do not want to see a return to lengthy delays in remote island centres for asylum seekers and refugees before solutions for them can be found." (Duration: 19″)
For her part, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay is concerned that offshore detention centres would lead to indefinite detention and put human rights at risk.