Asylum seekers arrive undetected at Cocos Islands

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 - 15:01

Melbourne: A boat carrying 69 asylum seekers reportedly arrived undetected at the Cocos Islands off the western coast of Australia on Wednesday.

Local resident Jack O`Donnell said he spotted an overcrowded boat just after 8:00 am local time, about 200 metres offshore, ABC news reported.

He said the four men onboard then swam ashore.

"About 10 minutes later four of the refugees, they`re Tamils, swam with life jackets through the surf," O`Donnell said.

He added that one asylum seeker spoke broken English and told him there were 69 people on board, including women and children. O`Donnell said he alerted the local police who attended and spoke to the four men.

A spokeswoman for Customs said that the department had no information about the arrival but it is understood the boat has been towed to the island`s lagoon.


First Published: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 - 15:01

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