DARWIN – Asylum seekers injured in violent clashes at a Darwin immigration facility have been returned to detention.
Nanjing Night Net

Up to 60 detainees were involved in a disturbance at the Darwin Airport Lodge – a temporary facility for families – on Saturday night, which resulted in six people being taken to hospital.

A further four people were injured on Sunday when further clashes broke out about noon.

A Department of Immigration and Citizenship spokeswoman said all asylum seekers had been returned to detention early yesterday morning.

She said asylum seekers found to have been involved were at risk of failing the character test for a protection visa.

A Northern Territory police spokeswoman said the matter had been handed to the Australian Federal Police for investigation and centre operator Serco said it would conduct its own inquiries.

Refugee Action Coalition co-ordinator Ian Rintoul said tensions had been rising in detention centres because of delays in the bridging visa process.

“There have been all sorts of promises made about people being allowed out on bridging visas by now but it just hasn’t happened,” Mr Rintoul said.

“There has been no political will to follow through with these commitments.

“I expect we’ll see lots of tensions in coming weeks, particularly at NIDC (Northern Immigration Detention Centre) because of that.”

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