Four people were reportedly dead but luckily 144 people were saved when Naval and Custom vessels came to rescue last night as a boat ridden by asylum seekers capsized in Christmas Island. The incident was just one out of the string of boat tragedies that have happened recently involving asylum seekers.
Some days ago, a baby boy, two children and eight adults drowned after an asylum boat vanished north of Christmas Island. And then on July 14 an asylum boat captain was rescued after 12 hours of being at the sea after their vessel sunk.
There 220 asylum seekers who either drowned or disappear at sea in separate previous accidents.
It looked like disaster like this will still keep happening in the future since Foreign Minister Bob Carr see that the 40,000 asylum seeker this year could double to 80,000 in the years to come.
In the wake of the deaths and disappearance of asylum seekers whom boats had either capsized or disappeared, Australian Labor Party and the Coalition keep pointing fingers as to whose party imposes weak policy on asylum seekers.
Immigration Minister Tony Burke said that the latest incident in Christmas Island was enough proof that the federal government need to come up with a regional solution to the growing border crisis.
In an interview with News Limited Network he said, "When you see some of the horrors that have unfolded in recent days nobody can doubt the need for a serious regional response beyond slogans and beyond political rhetoric."
While Opposition spokesman Scott Morrison commented that, "Our focus right now should be on supporting those Australians doing their utmost in trying to circumstance their lives."
Mr Morrison emphasised that the Coalition remained firm in its commitment to enforce its tow back policy. In fact, Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natelagawa expressed his willingness to discuss the policy, Mr Morrison said.
"The Coalition certainly welcomes the statement by Dr Natalegawa that obviously discussions and dialogue would obviously continue if the coalition government was elected in Australia. Of course, the Indonesian government would always deal with the government of the day in Australia, and I think that's a positive thing. I also note that Dr Natalegewa has completely rejected the suggestion made by the Prime Minister that the Coalition's policies could lead to some sort of Konfrontasi situation."
It had also been noted that since Prime Minister Kevin Rudd returned in his seat, there were 2376 people who had arrived on boats, including 2138 already this month.
Meanwhile a report from ABC News said that the Federal Government is already reviewing Australia's policy for processing asylum seekers and Mr Rudd will announce a new policy in the coming days. This might be an implication that he does not approve of Coalition's tow back policy.
In a community cabinet meeting in Rockhampton, Mr Rudd said, "If I am trying to summarise what Australian want, this is what they want: they want us to be kind, they want us to be compassionate. But they want an orderly migration system so when we're faced with the challenge of people smugglers... let me tell you this is really tough."
To contact the editor, e-mail: