Cracks in security
A CLEAR gap in Australia’s border security surveillance was exposed by the arrival of a boat carrying 15 asylum seekers in August, the defence force has conceded.
Chief of Joint Operations Commander, Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld, said the Vietnamese boat’s arrival in crocodile-infested waters of far north Queensland had spurred an increased presence in border patrol vessels in recent weeks.
Air Marshall Hupfeld said it was an “immense” task to patrol Australia’s coastline.
Authorities were swift to deport suspected asylum seekers who fled from their sinking boat. “There was a gap in the surveillance element,” he said yesterday.
“Our capabilities are increasing, they’re more expeditionary, we can get out and respond more rapidly than we used to.”