Search and rescue operation west of Christmas Island Final update - 1530 AEST 10 June

Australian Customs and Border Protection Service
Media Statement

All Border Protection Command vessels and aircraft have been released from the search for survivors following an incident north-west of Christmas Island on Friday 7 June.

This follows the suspension of search and rescue activities by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) at 9.15pm AEST yesterday (9 June).

No attempts to recover the deceased are being made today.

Border Protection Command vessels and aircraft are currently involved in a range of high priority operations in waters near Christmas Island and elsewhere. This includes operations in support of AMSA’s Rescue Coordination Centre Australia.

Our priority is responding to other vessels which may require assistance, and preventing any further loss of life.

If operations permit, Border Protection Command will, where it remains feasible and without further risk to life, endeavour to recover any bodies which may be relocated. The likelihood of successful recovery will diminish over time.

As announced by the Minister for Home Affairs yesterday (09 June), the Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS) will commission an internal review into the circumstances of the incident.

The ACBPS will consult with other agencies involved in the response to the incident in determining the terms of reference for the review.

The internal review is not designed to be a replacement for any criminal or coronial investigation which may be called into the incident. ACBPS will co-operate fully with any such external investigation.

Further detail on the nature of the internal review will be provided as it becomes available. Media enquiries:

Customs and Border Protection Media (02) 6275 6793


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