Border Protection Command assists vessel
HMAS Bundaberg and HMAS Wollongong, operating under the coordination of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), rendered assistance to a vessel north east of Christmas Island last night.
Initial indications suggested there were 188 people on board.
The vessel was initially detected by a RAAF maritime patrol aircraft also operating in support of AMSA.
Border Protection Command will make arrangements for the passengers to be transferred to Christmas Island, where they will undergo initial security, health and identity checks and their reasons for travel will be established.
People arriving by boat without a visa after 13 August 2012 run the risk of transfer to a regional processing country.
Media contact: Ryan Hamilton