Nearly 200 New Zealanders are being held in detention centres in Australia facing deportation under new immigration laws that mean anyone who isn’t a citizen and who has served a sentence of 12 months or more can be sent home.
It’s been reported that nearly 100 have already been sent back to New Zealand.
One of the main detention centres that New Zealand criminals are being held at is Christmas Island. Christmas Island is a remote outpost located 2,650km north-west of Perth. It houses asylum seekers as well as New Zealanders facing deportation from Australia.
On Monday a riot broke out at the Christmas Island detention centre after the death of an asylum seeker trying to escape.
The New Zealand government is seeking assurances from Australia that New Zealanders detained on Christmas Island are deported as quickly as possible.
Prime Minister John Key says he’s been “pretty blunt” with the Australian government over the way Kiwis are being detained and deported.