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Wednesday, 04 July 2012 - 8:40
A SURGE in the number of Sri Lankan asylum seekers reaching Australia
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A SURGE in the number of Sri Lankan asylum seekers reaching Australia by boat over the past three weeks – treble the number that arrived over all of last year – has lifted arrival numbers above those in 2009.

Already, over the first half of 2012, 1346 asylum seekers claiming to have come from Sri Lanka have arrived in Australian territory, more than six times the 211 ‘‘irregular maritime arrivals’’ in all of last year.

And nearly half of all this year’s arrivals have come in the past three weeks.

Department of Immigration figures provided to The Age on June 12th showed the number of Sri Lankan asylum seekers for the calendar year was 708.

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