The latest tough immigration stance announced in Australia will affect people who have arrived by boat in recent years who have been told they must prove they are genuine refugees to be deported.

Immigration Minister Peter Dutton has set a deadline of 01 October for about 7,500 of the 50,000 asylum seekers who arrived by boat before the controversial policy of stopping boats getting near the Australian coastline and by intercepting them and turning them back was introduced.


(TK Kurikawa/Bigstock)​

Dutton said that the 7,500 have failed or refused to present their case for asylum. 'Some of these people have been here for more than five years. Yet they have failed or refused to take any action to present their case for protection,' he explained.

'Many are residing in Australia on Government funded support which last year cost the Australian taxpayer approximately $250 million in income support alone. The 01 October deadline is non-negotiable,' he added.

He pointed out that anyone who has not lodged an application to have their claim for asylum assessed by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) by that date will be deemed to have forfeited any claim to protection.

'They will be subject to removal from Australia, prohibited from applying for any Australian visa, cut from Government income support and banned from re-entering Australia. They will be issued a short term visa while departure or removal is organised. It will provide minimal rights to work, Medicare and education for children as required by Australia's international obligations,' Dutton said.

He also revealed that since people smugglers began sending people to Australia in large numbers some 50,000 had arrived on more than 800 boats over five years and the cost to the Australian taxpayer of processing and then supporting them reached more than $13.7 billion.

He believes that Australians have every right to question why an estimated 80% plus of them arrived without any identity documents. 'In such circumstances processing their claims for protection has proven challenging and complex,' he added.

According to the DIBP some 3,000 have already been found not to be refugees and must leave Australia, 13,000 are having their claims assessed and 7,500 have not presented their case for protection and they are now facing the October deadline.

'The expectation is, if people can't make their claim for protection then they need to depart our country as quickly as possible. We are not going to allow, given the level of debt that our country is in, for more debt to be run up paying for welfare services for people who are not genuine,' Dutton concluded.

It is the latest in a number of tough changes in Australia's visa system which will make it harder for employers to get visas for skilled people from overseas and make it harder to become an Australian citizen. Some visa fees are also being increased.