Australians living abroad could be banned from leaving if they return

WION Web Team
NEW DELHI Published: Aug 06, 2021, 06:05 PM(IST)

Representative image Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

An expert in citizenship law from the University of Canberra, Prof Kim Rubenstein said that the change would unfairly affect Australians from multicultural backgrounds. Also, it could be constitutionally invalid

In a bid to curb the growing COVID-19 cases, the Australian government has expanded its ban on Australian citizens leaving the country to include people who are ordinarily residents in another country.

This means that even people who live overseas may not be allowed to leave Australia.

An expert in citizenship law from the University of Canberra, Prof Kim Rubenstein said that the change would unfairly affect Australians from multicultural backgrounds. Also, it could be constitutionally invalid.

This comes as the number of COVID-19 infections recorded worldwide passed 200 million on Thursday, an AFP count showed, as the pandemic surges around the world, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region where the Australian city of Melbourne locked down again.

Authorities in Australia's Melbourne announced another lockdown as Sydney continued to witness a surge in  coronavirus cases.

Also read | COVID-19 cases top 200 million worldwide as Delta variant poses threat

Victoria's Premier Daniel Andrews said there was "no alternatives to lockdown".

"This thing moves so fast. There is no debate or discussion about this - the Delta variant moves at lightning speed and by the time you get the people they have already infected, all the people they live with," Victoria premier Dan Andrews said.

"We can't allow that to happen otherwise we are locked down until Christmas," the Victorian premier informed.
At least half of Australia will be under lockdown when Victoria enters into a lockdown later on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Sydney continued to witness a surge in coronavirus cases as New South Wales recorded 262 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday which was the highest since the pandemic began along with five deaths. 

Officials said people in New South Wales will receive additional 180,000 Pfizer-BioNTech doses next week as the government considers relaxing restrictions on August 29 for the vaccination campaign.

New South Wales has reported 4,300 cases in the last seven weeks with Sydney's southwest area becoming the epicentre of the virus as officials extended stay-at-home restrictions to neighbouring areas.

The authorities urged people to be vaccinated as Newcastle and Hunter region announced a week-long lockdown.

Australia has vaccinated just 20 per cent of its population even as it closed its border since the pandemic began and put mandatory travel quarantine.
 

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