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MH370 wreckage to be found in Australia’s search zone

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Canberra:  Australia’s Foreign Minister Julie Bishop on Friday said that the wreckage from missing Malaysia Airlines flight 370 will be found in Australia’s search zone in the southern Indian Ocean.

Photo Credit- www.fameimages.com
Photo Credit- www.fameimages.com

Bishop said this week’s news of debris washing up on Reunion Island off the east coast of Africa pointed to the wreckage being somewhere within the 120,000 square kilometer search area off the west coast of Australia, Xinhua reported.

“We at least seem to have some evidence that flight MH370 will be found, particularly in the search area that (Australia) has been focusing on,” she said.

Bishop said Australia has an important role in finding the jet, not only to provide closure to the families of those missing, but also to reinstate faith in civil aviation to those who travel frequently.

“We believe it is important for international civil aviation, generally, for us to determine what happened to this flight, as well as provide the opportunity for families of those on-board to have some closure,” she said.

MH370 went missing on March 8 last year with 239 people on-board, most of them Chinese nationals.

Bishop said Australia had pledged another $40 million US to the search, but calculating who was contributing what to the hunt was not the pertinent issue.

“This is one of the great aviation mysteries of our time, and for the purpose of safety, security, faith, and trust in the civil aviation system, we must do what we can to find MH370,” she told.

(IANS)

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More than 200 Commonwealth Games Athletes Seek Asylum in Australia and 50 Go Missing

More than 200 Commonwealth Games athletes and officials remain in Australia after applying for refugee visas, with another 50 staying in the country illegally.

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More than 200 Commonwealth Games athletes and officials remain in Australia after applying for refugee visas, with another 50 staying in the country illegally.

The figures were revealed by Immigration Department officials to a Senate committee hearing on Monday night, reports Xinhua news agency.

A total of 8,103 athletes, media representatives and officials arrived in Australia on temporary visas for the Gold Coast event which concluded on April 15, with 7,848 returning home after their stay expired last week, meaning 255 stayed in the country.

Of those who have remained in Australia, 205 were legally in the community on bridging visas as they await approval to stay on a permanent basis. Border Force officials have commenced a nationwide search for the other 50 who have overstayed their visas.

The majority of foreigners seeking asylum in Australia were from war-torn African nations such as Sierra Leone, Ghana and Nigeria. However some members of the Indian and Pakistani teams have also remained in Australia.

Swimmers. Pixabay

Australia’s Department of Home Affairs deputy secretary, Malisa Golightly, told parliament on Monday night that most of the remaining participants “have applied for protection visas”.

“Anybody that is onshore can apply for protection legally once they are here, but of course then they are considered against … the criteria for that visa,” she said.

The temporary protection visas allow the Commonwealth Games participants to stay in Australia for up to three years and receive welfare benefits.

Peter Dutton, Australia’s Home Affairs Minister, said he was disappointed with the number of people who have stayed illegally as they had been welcomed to Australia “in good faith”.

“Australians hate being taken for a ride by freeloaders,” Dutton told Newscorp Australia on Monday night.

Also Read:Indians Among Top Asylum Seekers in the World: International Migration Outlook 2017 Report

“Australia is now obliged under international law to consider these protection visa applications.”

In comparison, only 45 people extended their visas or sought asylum in Australia after the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games.

–IANS

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