21 Jun 2014

Asylum seekers offered more to leave

3:21 pm on 21 June 2014

The Australian government has increased the amount of money it offers asylum seekers at its detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru, who accept an offer to return to their countries of origin.

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison confirmed the "return packages" were being offered, with some asylum seekers being given close to 10 thousand US dollars if they accept the offer to return.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that this is a five-fold increase from what was offered by the previous Labor government.

Australia's Immigration Minister, Scott Morrison

Australia's Immigration Minister, Scott Morrison Photo: Wikipedia

Mr Morrison says the packages are tailored specifically to each individual case.

Australia currently has in excess of two thousand refugees detained at its centres on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea and on Nauru, with processing having barely begun over a year after they were re-opened.

However, refugee advocates in Australia have accused the Abbott government of shirking its responsiblity to those who seek asylum in Australia by increasing the payments.