Image of pilgrims at the Opening Mass, WYD 2008 in Sydney, on Flickr
Australian courts are still processing the hundreds of appeals filed by Catholic asylum-seekers who arrived as pilgrims for World Youth Day in 2008, reports the Australian.
About 0.55 percent of World Youth Day pilgrims overstayed their visas, which is slightly higher than normal.
From 71,000 international visitors who were issued fee-free visas for the event, more than 255 claimed they could not be safely returned to their home countries.
By July last year, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship had issued protection visas to more than 40 percent, judging they have legitimate fears of persecution.
At least 153 failed asylum-seekers appealed against their determinations, including to the High Court, but most have failed.
The cohort of pilgrims who sought protection before July last year included 20 Kenyans, 17 Bangladeshis, 10 Nigerians, nine East Timorese, eight Ugandans, eight Fijians, seven Tongans, six Cameroonians and six Burmese.
Catholic refugees clog courts (The Australian)
Catholic Westminster on Flickr
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