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Home Breaking News Australia Covid: Sydney Christmas beach party sparks 'backpacker' deportation threat

Australia Covid: Sydney Christmas beach party sparks ‘backpacker’ deportation threat


#Melbourne, #Australia (CNN) — #Australia’s #Minister of #Immigration, #Citizenship and #Multicultural #Affairs has threatened to cancel the visas of any visitors caught breaking rules designed to prevent the spread of #Covid-19 in the country, after hundreds of people attended a beach party in #Sydney’s #Bronte #Beach on #Christmas #Day.

#Only 100 people were allowed to gather at an outdoor event in #Greater #Sydney on #December 25 after a new outbreak of #Covid-19 in the city’s #Northern #Beaches region led to tightened restrictions over the #Christmas period.
#But witnesses said the crowd at #Bronte #Beach on the afternoon of #Christmas #Day was in its “hundreds,” many of whom were drinking alcohol and not wearing face masks. #Brad #Hazzard, #Health #Minister for the state of #New #South #Wales (NSW), warned the party could be a “superspreader event.”

#Local journalist #Peter #Hannam, who walked by the event at 5 p.m., said a number of people in attendance were talking loudly in #British accents.

“These are the same people who would every summer gather at #Bondi #Beach or #Bronte or somewhere else because they want to show off to their northern hemisphere friends that it’s #Christmas and we’re in summer,” he said.

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#Authorities were eventually forced to break up the event, with the state’s riot police deployed to assist in removing the crowd.

#One person, a 25-year-old man, was issued a court attendance notice for failing to comply with the “move on” direction, police said. “The remainder of the crowd complied and left the area,” police said in a statement.

#It is not immediately clear how many of the crowd were residents or visitors on temporary visas. #Australia’s borders have been closed to anyone except citizens and residents since #March, but the government announced in #April that temporary visa holders — including backpackers — could extend their visas.
#But now, #Immigration #Minister #Alex #Hawke has warned that any foreign citizens caught breaching public health orders could have their visas reviewed or even canceled.

“#Visitors to #Australia need to be very clear that if they breach public health orders they are threatening the health and safety of #Australians and the federal government will look at their visas,” he said in an interview with the #Australian #Broadcasting #Corporation on #December 29.



[ source link ]
https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/australia-christmas-beach-party-immigration-intl-hnk/index.html

##Australia ##Covid ##Sydney ##Christmas #beach #party #sparks #backpacker #deportation #threat

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