25 Nov 2002

Deportation dilemma facing Marshall authorities

6:47 pm on 25 November 2002

The Marshall Islands is facing problems over attempts to deport more than a dozen over-stayers.

15 people from the China have been charged with over-staying their visas and charges are being prepared against another 30.

But even if the High Court issues the deportation orders, immigration officials in the United States territory of Guam, Fiji and Krirbati are refusing to grant transit visas.

With those destinations being the primary gateway to Asia, the Chinese overstayers are stuck in Marshall Islands.

Guam fears the Chinese citizens will try to seek political asylum and Fiji says it already has a problem with overstayers.

Kiribati says it has no secure facilities at the airport in which to keep the over-stayers during the night until a connecting flight the next day.