Monday, September 30th, 2013

Press Release: Lebanese Deaths at Sea off Indonesia

The United Australian Lebanese Movement expresses its deep and sincere condolences to the families and loved ones of those who perished at sea, whilst attempting to reach Australia via boat from Indonesia.

The attempts by Lebanese to reach Australia via the networks of people smugglers, is a new phenomenon. The UALM expects this problem to potentially become worse with the huge numbers of refugees escaping the Syrian conflict, who are now in Lebanon, potentially becoming the target of people smugglers, desperate for new markets.

The UALM wishes to advise any Lebanese or Syrian who are considering the offers of people smugglers, and attempting to reach Australia illegally via sea passage, not to be conned by these unscrupulous profiteers.

Once in Indonesia, you will be loaded into dilapidated, dangerous old boats. The journey is through dangerous seas and extremely difficult conditions. They will not even provide you with enough food and water for the journey.  If you are lucky enough to survive the journey and make it into Australian waters, you will be shipped to Papua New Guinea or Nauru for refugee processing.

Under Australian law, people arriving via boat will not be processed in Australia. If you are found to be a genuine refugee (very unlikely for any Lebanese), you will be resettled in Papua New Guinea or another country, the law forbids resettlement in Australia of any person arriving illegally via sea.

Do not risk you lives and be fooled by people whose aim is simply to make money from your misery.

The UALM calls on the Australian government to actively engage in an awareness campaign within Lebanon, aimed at the potential Lebanese and Syrian customers of people smugglers. This campaign will play important role in saving the lives of innocent people and depriving people smugglers of potential customers. The UALM stands ready to assist the government with any such endeavour.

The UALM has repeated cautioned the government that the situation in the Middle East would lead to large numbers of refugees seeking asylum in the country. The backing of rebels with links to extremist ideology has only lead to much destabilisation in Syria, Egypt and other countries. Prior to the current conflict in Syria, Lebanese or Syrian asylum seekers trying to reach Australia by boat was unheard of. Unless the extremists are checked in the Middle East, this situation will only get worse.


Robert Bekhazi

Federal President

United Australian Lebanese Movement

Media Enquiries: 0409 411822

Contact Profile

United Australian Lebanese Movement

Australian Lebanese Community group and lobby based all over Australia
Robert Bekhazi
P: 0393835222
M: 0409411822


Asylum seekers, Lebanese, Lebanon, Australia



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