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Report: Open asylum centers offishore

CANBERRA, Australia, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- An Australian government panel recommended opening asylum processing centers outside the country, an idea rejected by the Senate six weeks ago.

The three-member panel's 22 recommendations included one to establish, "as soon as possible," offshore processing centers on the islands of Nauru and Papua New Guinea, CNN reported.

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The number of people accepted for asylum each year should be increased from 13,750 to 20,000, the report added.

The report was immediately slammed by refugee advocates.

"It doesn't address the circumstances, it just shifts the problem somewhere else," said David Manne, executive director of Australia's Refugee and Immigration Legal Center.

The Green Party has fiercely resisted moves by the opposition to reopen offshore centers, claiming the action breaches human rights.

At least six boats carrying 265 people were intercepted during the weekend by Australian maritime authorities.

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