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Government Admits Losing 115 Illegal Refugees

4 March 2005

Government Admits Losing 115 Illegal Refugees - Go Find Them Says Peters

The government has admitted losing 115 illegal refugees and has no idea whether they pose serious security or health risks to New Zealanders.

The Rt Hon Winston Peters said today that the Minister of Immigration has finally confirmed his fears that 115 of the 700 refugees who have arrived in New Zealand over the past three years without documentation have slipped through the cracks and off the government’s radar screen.

“We do not know who they are, what threat they pose or even where they are located – this is simply not good enough.

“What is even more frightening is that these 115 form just a fraction of the estimated 20,000 illegal immigrants roaming our streets.

“This minister has engaged in the worst kind of obfuscation on this matter by not answering my questions in parliament and by providing the information only after parliament had risen for the week.

“It is time this minister stopped hiding behind bureaucratic incompetence and actually went and found these people before they can inflict serious damage on our country and it’s people”, concluded Mr Peters


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